His final curtain call. Isaiah Washington revealed that he has decided to retire from acting.
“It is with a heavy heart and a sense of relief that I am announcing my early retirement from the entertainment industry today,” the Grey’s Anatomy alum, 59, recently wrote via Twitter. “Those who have been Following/Witnessing my journey here on [Twitter] since 2011 all know that I have fought the good fight, but it seems that the haters, provocateurs and the Useful Idiots have won. I’m no longer interested in the back and forth regarding a ‘color construct’ that keeps us human beings divided nor am I interested in politics or anything vitriolic.”
Washington let his fans know that his last acting project was the 2022 film Corsicana, which he directed, wrote and starred in. The thriller also includes Lew Temple, Stacey Dash and Noel Gugliemi.
The Texas native, who describes himself as a “Frederick Douglass Conservative,” also revealed in his lengthy Twitter post that he had plans to travel the country “before it falls into Socialism and then Communism” and would be sharing updates from his “retirement shenanigans.”
The actor is best known as one of the original cast members of Grey’s Anatomy. In 2007, Washington was written off the show after he allegedly used a homophobic slur on set during an argument with Patrick Dempsey.
In Lynette Rice’s book, How to Save a Life: The Inside Story of Grey’s Anatomy, show writer Mark Wilding gave some insight into the incident between Washington and the Enchanted actor, 57.
“It was my episode. I think one of them had been late to set one day and the other one then decided to pay him back by being late himself. Then it sort of exploded,” Wilding recalled in the 2021 tell-all. “They got into an arguing match, and then before you know it they were physically fighting. I was standing there in video village. I’m, like, six feet four inches. I’m bigger than both of them. But I didn’t really jump in right away because I’m like, I don’t know if I want to get involved.”
Washington, for his part, discussed his firing from the show while appearing on Larry King Live one month after the news broke. He claimed that the disagreement occurred after the Maine native arrived late to work.
“And that was the moment that sent it into a different zone,” Washington said in 2007. “[Dempsey] became unhinged, sprayed spittle in my face. … I said several bad words. ‘There’s no way you’re going to treat me like the B-word, the P-word or the F-word.’”
“Every single day I was a problem that was being reminded, ‘You’re No. 4 on the call sheet. You’re not the star of this show,” Washington confessed while also alleging he was “used as a scapegoat” to cover up other problems on set amongst the cast.