Actor Eric Dane arrives at the premiere of Warner Bros....

Actor Eric Dane arrives at the premiere of Warner Bros. 'Terminator Salvation' at Grauman's Chinese Theatre in Hollywood, California in May 2009. Dane announced he will be leaving “Grey's Anatomy." Credit: Getty Images

Even given the long colorful history of  “Grey's Anatomy”' departures, this will still be a very big one: Eric Dane is leaving. Reasons are unclear, but TVLine -- which broke the story of the departure -- said Dane is looking for other opportunities. Here are the quotes directly from the website: 

Dane: “I am extremely grateful to everyone at Grey’s, ABC and Shondaland for the experience and memories I have had over the course of this run. It has been wonderful to work alongside and learn from a creative force such as Shonda Rhimes.”

Rhimes: Dane is “one of the most beloved characters on Grey’s Anatomy' [he] did not come to this decision lightly, but after much consideration and conversations, he and I have decided that this is the right time for his story line to end.”

Chyler Leigh's Lexie was offed in last season's finale. Expect -- my educated guess -- a similar exit-stage-left for Mark Sloan during the November sweeps.  

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