Fall TV Preview: Private Practice to Serve Up '13 Little Movies' (and a 'Delicious' Exit for Addison?)

Shonda Rhimes has taken her virtual scalpel and excised from the coming season of ABC’s Private Practice much of the B-story medical drama to make way for more personal stories and deliver a reformatted show that she likens to “13 little movies.”

“I said that if we’re going to have 13 episodes this season, we’re going to make 13 little movies, as opposed to having the template of a fully procedural aspect,” the series’ creator told TVLine during a recent set visit. Meaning, “We’re trying to be really creative about how we tell these episodes. Like, there are no rules.”

RELATED | Casting News: Private Practice Casts Matt Long, a Mad Man and Sam’s Mother

As such (and as has been previously reported), starting a few episodes into Season 6, each Private Practice hour will focus on the viewpoint of one doctor, sometimes glimpsing previously told stories in a new way, Rashomon-style. “It’s a really cool idea,” attests Paul Adelstein. “You’ll see storylines from other episodes in the background, but from a new person’s perspective, so you see different things happen.”

The net result is a Private Practice season that, should it only run 13 episodes (through the end of Kate Walsh’s contract with the show), will come off as undeniably unique. “The show has a very different feel, and to be able to say that six years in is incredible,” notes KaDee Strickland. “It’s a feat, and that’s no joke.”

PHOTOS | Private Practice: Get a Sneak Peek at the Episode That Alarmed Standards & Practices

But first, starting tonight at 10/9c, Private Practice must pick up the pieces from the season finale, in which Addison fielded a marriage proposal from Sam just as she was about to dive into something with Jake, Pete was arrested for euthanizing a patient, and Amelia was reeling from birthing her ill-fated baby. Here’s what the series’ cast was able to reveal about the new season.

ADDISON, SAM AND JAKE (AND LI’L HENRY, TOO) | Expect to spend most of the premiere waiting to deduce which fella Addison chose. As Taye Diggs explains, “The episode is designed in a fashion where up until the end, you are literally teased so you only see a portion of what her decision was.” So, Benjamin Bratt adds, while you will spy “Sam without clothes in one bedroom, and see me walking into another bedroom, you won’t know where the characters are.” As for the little man in Ad’s life, “You’re definitely going to see Henry,” Walsh promises with a big smile. “That baby is so cute, and one of my favorite jobs is getting to play with him!”

VIDEO | Private Practice Season Premiere Sneak Peek: So… Where’s Pete?

VIOLET AND PETE (MINUS PETE) | With Tim Daly gone from the cast — and this being a Shonda show — all Amy Brenneman could reveal about the fall-out of Pete’s arrest is “it’s something that many, many people and many, many women have gone through… a moment where you get to tell a story that’s very universal…. It’s an all-new, brave world [for Violet].”  Rhimes in turn teases “a really interesting and beautiful journey” for Brenneman’s character.

CHARLOTTE AND COOPER (AND MASON — DON’T FORGET MASON!) | All told, Strickland teases, “You’ve never seen [Charlotte and Cooper] like you’re going to see them this season — and you’ve seen them a lot of different ways and positions, honey!” (Hmm, is she alluding to the infamous 100th episode that alarmed Standards & Practices?) On the assuredly G-rated side, Adelstein says that as Charlotte and Cooper settle into their roles as parents to young Mason, “[They realize] that everything that happens to them, everything they want to do in their lives, has a residual and major effect on this kid. I don’t think they’ve really thought that through until it really hits home.” One thing we know about the premiere is that Charlotte confides in her hubby a big secret. Could Mason be getting a sib? “It’s Private Practice, and she’s a double board-certified neonatal surgeon,” Strickland deflects. “There are always babies on this show!”

AMELIA AND SHELDON | Caterina Scorsone says that in the three months that have lapsed, Amelia “has been grieving the losses that she suffered last year and finding new footing…  so she has emerged with a slightly different attitude.” Brian Benben meanwhile says, “There’s someone from Sheldon’s past that he’s sort of revisiting a relationship with, in a tangential way.”

THE GOODBYE GIRL | Walsh has left it entirely up to da boss how Addison will exit the series in Episode 13. After all, “Shonda and the rest of the writers have always had my back, so… I’ve always put my faith in them. I just trust that it will be really, really delicious.” And happy…? “Yeah, why not!” Walsh concurs. “Or whatever. I’m open to whatever!” (With reporting by Vlada Gelman)

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29 Comments
  1. Adam says:

    Since it’s Shonda, she will probably kill Addison before making her happy.

  2. Jamie says:

    Addison and baby Henry is all I am looking forward to!

  3. Kara says:

    Addison better pick Jake tonight!!

  4. april-ann says:

    Undeniably unique is right. Creative and daring, too. I like it.

  5. Ella says:

    I just don’t see how this show is going to work without Addison.

  6. kia says:

    cant’ wait to see charcoop scene, hope is gonna be a great season for them

  7. julia says:

    as much as i want her to pick Jake i have a feeling that its sam and that would make me very unhappy.. what would of been the point developing this relationship last season if she’ll end up picking sam. ill be very disappointed.

  8. Dizzle says:

    I love the show, but I don’t think I’d want to see a Private Practice without Addison. This sounds like a fantastic way to end the show – just completely fearless storytelling. Its not like there’s no reason any of the other fan-favourite characters couldn’t turn up on Grey’s Anatomy.

  9. Viv says:

    Is Amelia going to Grey’s after these 13 episodes?

    • abbyoftroy says:

      Goodness, NO! I hope not! She’s too good for Grey’s. She’s far too great and complex of a character to share a storyline with 736 other characters, with far less depth than her.

  10. abbyoftroy says:

    Shonda keeps saying “If I have more stories to tell after these 13 episodes, I’ll tell them.” and that sort of thing, but it pisses me off that she doesn’t seem all that interested. Because it does seem that it’s in her hands, not the network’s, the future of the show, and PP has always been her less favorite, because it’s not Grey’s, her pride child, and it doesn’t have a black lead actress. Still, I wish it would go on without Kate Walsh. For the past two seasons Kadee and Caterina have swooped up and taken over the show, both storyline, acting and emotion wise. Amy Brenneman can be such a huge force, when she’s not wrapped up in the lame Pete storylines, and that’s gone. Then, there’s Paul Aldestein, who went from Coop, to FREAKING Cooper, and just became main lead. These guy could totally carry on this show, give it a new light, a new vibe, and make it even more awesome!

    • allaboutchar says:

      I’m with you. i totally love charcoop, amelia, sheldon, and Jake. They could easily carry the new show, especially charcoop. I could grow to love Sam again, I think. I know whoever Addie chooses will have to go with her when she leaves, either Sam or Jake, love them both but hoping she chooses baby Henry. I love Amy B. but can’t stand Violet, wish she had left with Pete. I have gotten so attached to charcoop, amelia and sheldon. I will really be sad if the show does not continue with them. By the way, I think the mini-movie idea is great. I could see the show continuing in that mode. I would love it!!!

  11. Jan says:

    Fingers crossed for Addison/Jake tonight. Addison/single motherhood would be acceptable too. But I would really love to see her with Jake.

    • Megan says:

      I agree!! Jake actually is 100% behind what she has wanted from day 1, like telling his daughter about her and they werent even together then! where Sam was just too self interested to care what she wanted and he always seemed like she wasnt his priority… and kids is what she had always wanted more than anything! ! not like “wow, wheres this coming from?” shes a baby doctor, of course she WANTS a baby! think too little too late Sam!! Jake and Adi are awesome, please let it pay off!!!!! Plus, Jake/ Ben Bratt is a babe, come on!

  12. yeb2 says:

    Amelia didn’t have a miscarriage.

  13. This show can go on without Addison only if the writers keep writing amazing mind blowing stories, I love Kate Walsh/Addison but Ameila, Violet, and Cahrlotte are three amazing women who can tell great stories.

    • Marie says:

      It is the same tragic predictable stories over and over, Imo. The show should have ended in Season 5. It is the same with Grey’s, but Grey’s has great ratings. PP doesn’t and is on its last breath. Cast comings, stayings, and goings or storylines don’t matter, it is a goner.

  14. Sara says:

    Sad this will be my last season watching Addison! I hope she gets a beautiful happy ending. I don’t have any thoughts on the show after the 13 because I will not be watching it after Kate Walsh’s departure.

  15. Miffy says:

    I hate it when producers or actors on TV shows insist that they’re making “little movies. Um, no you’re not. Especially not crap like Private Practice.

  16. Char says:

    This show has been truly awful for the past 2 seasons. Every character (except Charlotte) is gratingly unlikable. Every time I watch that show I wonder why I’m watching it. Someone please tell me what else I can watch on Tuesdays at 10 this year.

    And please, Shonda, put this mess out of its misery.

  17. ColleenBartz says:

    Please do not take Kate Walsh of pp. She is a excellent actress !!! Addison and Jake. Belong together. And should have a baby together. !! It ruins a tv series when the best actress leave the program. !!

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