by Natalie Abrams • @NatalieAbrams
Posted August 31 2016 — 11:59 AM EDT
It’s been a long time coming, but Arizona is finally going to get some lovin’ this season on Grey’s Anatomy!
Though Arizona (Jessica Capshaw) was initially slated to get a love interest in season 12 that didn’t end up coming to fruition, executive producer Shonda Rhimes tells EW exclusively that the pediatric doc will indeed find romance in season 13.
“We’re absolutely going to see it,” Rhimes says. “Jessica was very, very delightfully pregnant at the end of last year, and so she’s not in the first two episodes — which everybody brace yourselves for — because she’s taking a little bit of time off for kids, but then she’s back. I’m very excited to introduce a love interest for her, and to get to tell a story with her that lets her be who she is, and to see who she is post the relationships that she’s had.”
While Rhimes stays coy on who the love interest might be, the Shondaland boss stresses that she doesn’t want to force the relationship. “You don’t want to just stick two people together,” Rhimes says. “I want to do it organically and I want the audience to be rooting for it. So I think we’re going to have fun with it.”
The news comes in the wake of Callie (Sara Ramirez) leaving Seattle for New York, providing the opportunity for Arizona to really move on with her life — though that’s not to say Callie is out of her life for good. “We’re playing that Arizona gets to go visit her daughter and her daughter gets to come see her,” Rhimes says. “So it’s not this sense of loss. In our world, Callie still exists.”
Grey’s Anatomy returns Thursday, Sept. 22 at 8 p.m. ET on ABC.