For fans worried sick (sorry) over which beloved cast members are going to make it to the next season of Grey’s Anatomy, the prognosis is good. Series originals Patrick Dempsey, Ellen Pompeo, Sandra Oh and Justin Chambers – along with Chandra Wilson and James Pickens Jr. – have all put pen to paper on a deal that will see them return for a ninth and tenth season on the ABC medical drama.

In a radio interview with Carson Daly this week, Dr. McDreamy himself discussed his relief over the end of the long contract negotiations. “It’s just so nice to have a job and it continues on as a wonderful thing, so, very grateful that it’s happening,” says Dempsey. “[I’m] very happy … to move forward and looking forward to another couple of years of the show.”

Despite the official two-year contract, Dempsey seems open to idea of extending his term at Seattle Grace beyond a possible 10th season:

“We’ll see how we feel at the end of two years, but that’s been a long run, hopefully with these next two years we can infuse some new life into the show. I know there are a lot of interesting things coming up on the last two episodes that I think will be quite moving for people.”

Grey’s Anatomy is often praised for its compelling onscreen drama – but the show’s off-screen drama has also been the center of some gripping news.  Despite leaving the show in a storm of controversy in 2010, after criticizing her character Dr. Izzie Stevens, series original Katherine Heigl admitted earlier this year she’d like to return to the show:

“I’ve told them I want to [return]. I don’t know … Being a showrunner and being a writer of a TV series like that is so complicated that I mean she’s got how many characters are there now? There’s a lot and so she’s balancing about 40 different storylines, so I don’t know if it fits in to their sort of vision for this season or next or however many seasons it goes.”

While the news of the contract renewals is great for a lot of fans, the recent announcements somewhat take away from the previously-publicized big news that one of our much-beloved doctors will be taking a one-way trip to the morgue in the season 8 finale.

With showrunner Shonda Rhimes saying “A lot of our writers were crying, which is a very rare thing, it seems the announcement of the two-year contract deals could have been kept quiet for a little bit longer to add to the suspense of next week’s finale. Considering Pompeo, Dempsey, Oh, Chambers, Wilson, and Pickens Jr are all coming back, it’s safe to say none of them will meet their maker – unless Grey’s Anatomy is about to become a far more dark and demented show.

Grey’s Anatomy Season 8 finale airs Thursday May 17th @9pm on ABC

Expect to hear news of Grey’s Anatomy season 9 renewal next week.

Source: TV Guide