Ellen Pompeo has been overwhelmed by the support she has received from women since she spoke up about her battle to increase her salary on hit show Grey’s Anatomy.
In a cover story for The Hollywood Reporter (Jan18), Ellen admitted that after co-star Patrick Dempsey left the show, she fought with show bosses until her pay was bumped to $20 million per year.
Being so open with her struggles led to an outpouring of support from fans, which Ellen has been surprised and overwhelmed to be at the receiving end of.
“The women who have approached me from all walks of life since this article came out, I’ve really been shocked and so moved about how so many women just run up to me and want to share their stories because I think as women sometimes we’re afraid to ask,” Ellen said as she appeared on The Ellen DeGeneres Show on Thursday (22Mar18).
“We’re afraid to be vocal, we’re taught not to be… I think it’s really important to encourage each other, to encourage other women to stand up and be strong. We will be ok and we have each other’s backs. You don’t have to pit us against each other. We’re not enemies. We do lift each other up and support each other, and we’re not victims. We’re very strong and we’re capable of many, many things.”
Ellen also addressed the claims that her boosted salary was responsible for Jessica Capshaw and Sarah Drew leaving the show. She previously denied the claims on Twitter but once again hit back at the speculation during a chat with Ellen, calling it “absolutely not true”.
“I’m not involved in these kind of decisions, however, there’s a few problems that you encounter doing a show for 14 seasons,” she explained. “One of them is the writers have a really hard time creatively thinking up new stories for all these characters.
“I think we have 16 regular cast members, and I think it’s always sad when we lose people for whatever reason. Whether they want to go or don’t want to go, it doesn’t make it any easier,” she sighed.