Actor Isaiah Washington is re-igniting a years-long feud with his former Grey’s Anatomy co-star Katherine Heigl on social media after his controversial 2007 dismissal from the hit ABC show.
While Washington has gone on to produce acclaimed performances in Blue Caprice and Blackbird, including his recent guest starring role on the summer breakout hit P-Valley, he’s still very, very upset with Heigl over comments she made at the time, which he believes may have led to his firing.
“This woman once proclaimed that I should ‘never’ be allowed to speak publicly again. The world agreed with her proclamation back then and protested for my job and my head in 65 languages. I wish I was on Twitter in 2007, because I will NEVER stop exercising my free speech,” he wrote on Monday, including a photo of Heigl just in case we were confused about who he was talking about.
“I’ve learned that all money ain’t good money and no amount of money can replace your dignity and integrity. Some call it living by your principles,” he continued in another tweet, while agreeing with another commenter who accused Heigl of being unliked in Hollywood.
Reportedly, Washington was let go from the show after he used the f-word, a homophobic slur, on the set. Washington denied that it was directed at anyone in particular, but others believed he was addressing T.R. Knight, who played Dr. George O’Malley on the show. O’Malley later came out as gay in an exclusive with PEOPLE.
That same year, Washington addressed the incident backstage at the Golden Globes where he used the slur again after reporters questioned him about the tensions on set. He apologized and again stated that he was not homophobic. The moment was definitely awkward as his castmates appeared horrified standing alongside him backstage.
That was where things between him and Heigl got tangled up once she publicly advocated for Knight during an interview with Access Hollywood.
“I’m going to be really honest right now, he needs to just not speak in public. Period,” she said. “I’m sorry, that did not need to be said, I’m not okay with it.”
“I just feel like this is something that should be very much in-house we need to deal with,” she added. “… T.R. is my best friend. I will throw down for that kid.”
In a separate interview with Larry King Live, Washington said he used the word and a few other offensive ones during a heated argument with former co-star Patrick Dempsey and regretted letting the event escalate to a boiling point.
Washington reprised his role of Dr. Preston Burke during a 2014 appearance which coincided with the farewell story arch to Sandra Oh’s character Dr. Cristina Yang, where Washington and Oh played love interests on the show.
In the meantime, Washington is still going toe to toe with his critics on Twitter after his tweet about Heigl.
Hopefully the focus will shift back towards the pandemic, because whew chile this is just too much in the middle of a global crisis.