Grey's Anatomy Showrunner Opens Up About Day of the Dead Episode

Grey's Anatomy day of the dead episode, derek come back
Grey's Anatomy via ABC

Grey's Anatomy showrunner Krista Vernoff talks about the Dia de los Muertos episode in season 15.

Showrunner Krista Vernoff Open Up About the Return of MAJOR Characters in Season 15

Fans were shocked when a Spanish cover of "Chasing Cars" started playing in the 6th episode of Grey's Anatomy season 15, titled "Flowers Our of My Grave". And for once, none our beloved characters were in jeopardy of dying.

Rather, the result was a brief tear-inducing sequence that destroyed fans at the end of the show's Dia de los Muertos episode.

As Meredith (Ellen Pompeo) leaves Grey Sloan Memorial, viewers see clips of a few deceased fan-favorite characters, including George (T.R. Knight), Ellis (Kate Burton), her dog Doc, Lexie (Chyler Leigh), Derek (Patrick Dempsey), and Mark (Eric Dane).

So how did this scene come together? Showrunner *Krista Vernoff opens up about the scene, including details on which characters came back to film their scene.

Like most great things on television, the idea to write a Dia de los Muertos episode came from the writer's room.

Vernoff explained that the idea came after ABC released the Grey's Anatomy air dates. Kiley Donovan, who actually wrote the episode, asked to do something about Dia de los Muertos.

While Grey's has done a Halloween episode, the team thought that doing a Day of the Dead-themed episode could really be something special.

"We were representing a holiday that had never been represented on our show and a community that is under attack in our country right now and that felt important," Vernoff explained. "Representation matters so much. And I had just watched the movie Coco with my daughter, whose name is Coco, and I was so moved to discover the idea that there is a day when our people can come back to us. So Kylie pitched it and I said, 'Let's have [Meredith's] dead people come visit.'"

Grey's Anatomy via ABC

Now as for how they made Meredith's people come back to life, well, that was up to television magic. This is also known as the visual effects department.

"We talked about it for four months with the visual effects people," Vernoff explained. "You have to really plan a sequence like that. What I love about that sequence is that we have combined some old footage that aired, some old footage that didn't air — we pulled old dailies — and we shot some new stuff."

Hold up.

We knew that a few of our favorite doctors did not film new scenes for this episode. So who made the cut for new footage?

"Doc, we shot. Ellis, we shot," Vernoff said. "And the idea of that, for me, is that we don't know if this is in Meredith's imagination or memory, or if it's actually happening. For whatever anybody believes, there is a little bit of something."

Grey's Anatomy via ABC

Hats off to the *Grey's Anatomy team for making a beautiful episode. Did you cry while watching?*

Grey's Anatomy Airs Every Thursday at 8/7c on ABC