Meredith Grey will only feature in some episodes in the upcoming season of the medical drama.

'Grey's Anatomy' is still going, but word is that season 19 will feature less of the main character than ever before.

Meredith Grey, who at the end of season 18 decided to stick it out longer at Grey Sloan Memorial rather than move to Minnesota, will only appear in eight episodes of the next season. Grey will continue to narrate parts of the popular series and Pompeo will still remain an executive producer, but she'll step aside for some of the younger cast to shine.

The news comes after Pompeo secured the main role in a new Hulu drama series, which is inspired by real-life happenings. Entitled 'Orphan', the limited series will tell the story of Ukranian-born orphan Natalia Grace who was labelled as a "sociopath" by her adoptive parents in the US. The extremely bizarre story surrounds the Barnett family who, even though Natalia says she was aged just six, doubted her age and believed she was actually in her 20s.

Ellen Pompeo is one of three original cast members to still appear in 'Grey's Anatomy' going into season 19. Chandra Wilson's Miranda Bailey and James Pickens Jr.'s Richard Webber are the only other long-standing actors to play their characters all these seasons later. Filming of the next season of the drama series is currently underway and will reportedly consist of 22 episodes.

Rumours of the longest-running primetime medical drama packing it in have been swirling for a few years, but the show doesn't show any signs of slowing down just yet. However, Pompeo's character has seen her time on the series reduced somewhat in recent seasons - Grey was in a coma for season 17 and the character spent time in Minnesota for most of season 18.

Series creator Shonda Rhimes has branched out into securing a deal with Netflix, and has created a couple of high-profile series for the streaming service, 'Bridgerton' and 'Inventing Anna'.