Grey’s Anatomy firefighter spin-off: Jaina Lee Ortiz to star

Jaina Lee OrtizIt looks like Jaina Lee Ortiz is going to be going back to television not long after the end of Rosewood — she’s about to join the Grey’s Anatomy spin-off!

As first confirmed by Deadline, the actress — whose credits also include a big arc this summer on Shooter — will potentially be one of the leads on the new series. The story is going to revolve around a group of firefighters in Seattle, and will potentially interact here and there with the action happening at the Grey Sloan Memorial Hospital. Stacy McKee, the executive producer and co-showrunner of the flagship show, is writing the first episode. The show will be planted within Grey’s Anatomy itself and will run for ten episodes. This is a good trial run for the concept; if successful, we have to imagine that the second season would run for longer.

There are still many questions out there about this show, including a premiere date, but it’s no surprise why ABC would want the show or why Ortiz would want to be a part of it. Grey’s Anatomy remains ABC’s top-rated and most-watched drama, even almost a decade and a half into its run. There was a brief period of time in there where it lost the title, but it’s now come roaring back. Spinning off the show into Private Practice proved successful for many years, and it makes sense to do so again. Also, having two dramas about heroes/rescuers in a city is a format that should work very well. We saw it turn out successful for the One Chicago franchise, and it’s proven (at least through the NBC model) that crossovers tend to result in higher ratings for both shows. With Scandal ending, ABC needs more hits and this is one of the closest things that they have to a surefire one (fire pun intentional).

This is obviously also far from the end of the road when it comes to casting news for the show, as we’ve got a feeling we’ll be hearing many more names over the coming weeks and months. The clout of Grey’s Anatomy and executive producer Shonda Rhimes should make this an enticing property for big-name actors. There’s more of a chance for longevity here than the standard network show.

If you missed it…

Production on Grey’s Anatomy season 14 is already underway, and some of the select cast members are already working in Seattle! We know that the show typically doesn’t film there, but if you head over to this link, you can get some more insight as to what’s going on. (Photo: ABC.)

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