EXCLUSIVE: 'Grey's Anatomy's' Jason George Reveals Nerve-Wracking Way He Learned He Was Moving to Spinoff
By Philiana Ng
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Jason George is looking forward to fighting fires on the upcoming Grey’s Anatomy firefighter spinoff, but he’s as in the dark about what this means for his character, Dr. Ben Warren, as viewers are.
“I’m looking forward to finding out,” George told ET’s Katie Krause at Entertainment Weekly’s pre-Emmy party at Sunset Tower on Friday, of Ben’s future. “We’ve already established that Ben is a little bit of an adrenaline junkie. He likes his action. He’s calm under pressure. I’m looking forward to seeing how they make this transition.”
“He’s going to get into some mess, and I’m also pretty certain that his wife [Miranda Bailey] is not going to like it very much -- that she’s not going to be a fan of [him] running into fires,” the 45-year-old actor added, joking, “Some women dig the firefighters.”
George revealed the backstory on how he got the news that he would be transitioning to the new 10-episode series, which will be led by Jaina Lee Ortiz, sharing that his Grey’s castmates were hounding him about the chances of him moving over before it was made official on Sept. 12.
“It was a phone call,” he recalled. “I was literally back in Virginia throwing my nephews around in a pool. I got a call, ‘Shonda Rhimes and Betsy Beers would like to give you a call today around 5 o’clock. Can you take that call?’ and I was like, ‘Um, yeah, yeah.’ When Shonda Rhimes calls, you feel like you get called into the principal’s office a little bit and you think, maybe I better take that call. We talked and she ran it down for me and had me at hello.”
George confessed that he was initially trepidatious about taking Rhimes and Beers’ call, thinking that the executive producers would be delivering bad news.
“I was nervous when Shonda gave me the call. I was like, ‘I’m in trouble. What did I do?’ I was trying to think if I dropped a secret some place. I was thinking, ‘The finale had a fire. I didn’t die in that fire, could there still be a fire? Is this a call where I’m dropped off of something?’ But it was all good news,” he adorably admitted.
As for what he plans to do to prepare for the firefighter spinoff, including learning new terminology, George said he hopes to check in with real-life heroes.
“I have some friends who are firefighters and I was talking to one earlier today, and I’m going to do some ride-alongs with some of the firefighters out here in L.A,” he shared. “At the end of the day, people who run into fire are people who run into fire, and he was dropping terms on me and I was like, ‘Yeah man, you gotta unpack that for me!’”
Grey’s Anatomy kicks off season 14 with a two-hour premiere on Thursday, Sept. 28 at 8 p.m. ET/PT on ABC.