Shonda Rhimes: Not ‘Insulted’ By Katherine Heigl’s Emmy Comments

07/17/2008 at 12:00 AM EDT

Shonda Rhimes: Not ‘Insulted’ By Katherine Heigl’s Emmy Comments
Lester Cohen/WireImage; Steve Granitz/WireImage

Katherine Heigl's recent comments about taking herself out of consideration for the Emmy race may have stunned fans, but Grey's Anatomy creator Shonda Rhimes wasn't fazed at all.

"I didn't feel insulted," Rhimes told reporters Thursday during an ABC TCA panel in Los Angeles. Still, she told reporters, "When I was told what Heigl said I found it surprising. I love and respect Katie as an actress. But she is outspoken."

While Rhimes took it all in stride, others on the panel said they wouldn't have reacted so benignly.

"I would have put her in a coma," Ugly Betty creator Silvio Horta joked with reporters. (After Heigl's comments hit the Internet, there were rumblings that her character Izzie would be killed off the show.)

But Rhimes backed up ABC entertainment president Stephen McPherson's earlier comment that Heigl will be returning to the show next season … -and have a juicy story line to boot. "We have a great story," she told reporters. "We're all excited."

So why did Heigl say what she said? Rhimes had no comment, but Desperate Housewives creator Marc Cherry offered up his theory. "She was drunk," he joked. --Brian Orloff, with reporting by Liza Hamm and Lisa Ingrassia

Lester Cohen/WireImage; Steve Granitz/WireImage

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