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Patrick Dempsey clarifies 'Grey's' exit rumours

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Patrick Dempsey as Derek Shepherd
Patrick Dempsey has clarified rumours that he is planning to leave Grey's Anatomy.

Dempsey, who has played Dr. Derek Shepherd since the show began in 2005, recently told Vanity Fair Italia that he expects to depart the series after the upcoming eighth season.

"[Season eight] is going to be my last," he told the magazine. "I do not know what's going to happen to the other characters, but for me it's done.

"It's been great and a great part of my life. But I can't see me doing it anymore."

However, Dempsey's representative has now told Entertainment Weekly that the star is not sure about his future on the show.

"He was referring to the fact that his contract is up at the end of next season and we have no idea what the future holds," the spokesperson said.

Ellen Pompeo, who plays Dempsey's on-screen wife Meredith, has also previously said that she is expecting to leave Grey's Anatomy after the eighth season when her contract expires.

Meanwhile, the show's executive producer Shonda Rhimes has acknowledged that the next run may be the last for some of the stars and revealed that she plans to focus on the original cast members in the new episodes.

Grey's Anatomy will return for its eighth season in the fall on ABC. The seventh season finale airs in the UK tonight at 10pm on Sky Living.

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