Key Words: Ellen Pompeo tells Taraji P. Henson about the early ‘toxic’ culture on ‘Grey’s Anatomy’

The on-screen antics between the surgeons and interns that made “Grey’s Anatomy” a hit were nothing compared to the drama happening behind the scenes.

The show’s star, Ellen Pompeo, got candid Wednesday about the rocky early years on the ABC hit with fellow powerhouse Taraji P. Henson, who has played fan-favorite character Cookie on Fox’s “Empire” for six years, as part of Variety’s “Actors on Actors” series.

“The first 10 years [on ‘Grey’s Anatomy’] we had serious culture issues, very bad behavior, really toxic work environment.”

Ellen Pompeo

“Grey’s Anatomy” has been anchoring the Disney-owned DIS, +0.83% broadcast network’s Thursday lineup for 15 years, and has been renewed for another two seasons, making it the longest-running medical drama on TV.

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