Back in September, Ellen Pompeo revealed that she once clashed with Denzel Washington when he was brought on to direct an episode of her hit series Grey’s Anatomy. As Pompeo described it on her podcast, Washington went “HAM” on her after she improvised a line while filming a scene with co-star Patrick Dempsey. Pompeo had yelled “Look at me when you apologize,” which Washington mistook as the Grey’s star telling Dempsey what to do.
“He was like, ‘I’m the director. Don’t you tell him what to do,’” Pompeo recalled before revealing that she fired back at Washington with some choice profanity. As for his side of the story, well, let’s just say The Tragedy of Macbeth actor wasn’t entirely thrilled to be asked about the fracas during a recent interview. However, he did make sure to say there’s no bad blood. Via Variety:
As Ellen Pompeo recalled in a podcast in September, she clashed with Washington because he wouldn’t let her improvise in a scene. “Denzel went HAM on my ass,” Pompeo said, which led her to shoot back: “Listen, motherf*cker, this is my show!”
When asked about the incident, Washington sidesteps the question. “No, no,” he says, claiming that he doesn’t recall that day. Then, with a slight grin, he adds, “But it’s all good.”
On an interesting note, that was the first and last time Denzel Washington directed an episode of television, so either he was not a fan of the experience or Shonda Rhimes wields an insane amount of power. It’s a toss-up.