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Grey's Anatomy and Private Practice have had multiple crossovers events, allowing characters to appear in either series for a storyline. Since the debut of Private Practice during the fourth season of Grey's Anatomy, several crossover events between the two series have occurred. The characters of Addison Forbes Montgomery and later Amelia Shepherd are often at the forefront of the crossovers. 

As of yet, a total of eight crossover events have taken place. The most prolific crossover occurred in February 2009 and featured many characters from each series crossing over.

Backdoor Pilot, May 2007Edit

3x22-21

Addison visits her old friends in "The Other Side of This Life, Part 1"

PPS1Poster

Poster for the Backdoor Pilot

The Grey's Anatomy episodes "The Other Side of This Life, Part 1"  and "Part 2" served as a backdoor pilot for what would become Private Practice, introducing all characters that would later form the main cast of the new show (except for Charlotte King).

The plot revolves around Addison taking a sabbatical from Seattle, and going to LA to visit her old friends, Naomi and Sam. Naomi is a fertility specialist; one of the best, according to Addison, and would be the person to get Addison pregnant. Over the course of her visit, Addison ends up signing onto a medical case and performing surgery. With the departure of the practice's previous OB/GYN, Addison is offered a job at the practice as the new OB/GYN.

Addison's DepartureEdit

While Addison's departure from Grey's Anatomy is not shown or stated during the season finale of Grey's Anatomy, the first episode of Private Practice shows Addison and Richard Webber fighting over her decision, and Richard accepting her resignation.

Addison's Return, May 2008Edit

4x13-1

Addison returns to Seattle Grace in "Piece of My Heart".

Due to the Writer's Guild Strike of 2007/2008, Private Practice ceased production with the original order of nine episodes fulfilled and the remaining 13 ordered not produced. It was felt that Addison should return to Seattle Grace, and she did so in the Grey's Anatomy episode "Piece of My Heart" after the strike.

In the episode, Addison returns to Seattle Grace, insisting she is "not back" and is only there for a consultation. She realizes many things have changed since her departure, and, curiously, foreshadows events that will occur. Richard offers her her job back, but Addison declines. Although the "blood and stench" of surgery makes her feel good, she comes to realize that it was right for her to leave.

The Grey's Anatomy & Private Practice Crossover Event, February 2009Edit

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Addison and Derek perform surgery together in "Ex-Life"

After the success of Addison returning to Seattle for one episode, the idea of a large scale crossover between the two shows was created and was something both the creative forces behind the series and the network were keen to produce. The fourth crossover was marketed as the "Grey's Anatomy and Private Practice Crossover Event" by ABC. The event was much more significant affair compared to the previous crossover, which only included Addison. The February 2009 crossover consists of continuous storylines over both Grey's Anatomy and Private Practice and features stars from both series. There are two main story lines which cross over into each series, both involving Derek and Addison.

The first storyline involves Addison's brother, Archer, as he is diagnosed with neurocysticercosis (parasites in his brain) and he is rushed to Seattle Grace. Although Archer and Derek share a mutual distrust of each other, Derek is one of only a handful of neurosurgeons in the world that could perform his procedure successfully.

The second storyline involves one of Derek's pregnant patients, Jen Harmon, who has an aneurysm in her brain. Following a mistake in surgery, Addison diagnoses mother and baby with Mirror Syndrome (the mother is suffering from the same disease the baby is suffering from) and both work to correct the problem.

Other storylines involved in the crossover include Derek's mother hating Addison, Addison helping Bailey with her pediatric surgery fellowship application, and the debate over whether Sam is having a simple asthma attack or a panic attack about Naomi.

Bailey's Patient Crossover, October 2009Edit

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Addison, Sam, and Bailey talk to Sarah's sister in "Right Here, Right Now".

Coming off the heels of the successful February 2009 crossover, a further crossover was planned for the start of the 2009-2010 television season. This was the first crossover to take a more patient-centered approach as the crossover followed the attempts of Miranda Bailey's patient Sarah to receive a kidney transplant. The crossover began in the Grey's Anatomy episode "Invasion" where Bailey organized a kidney transplant for Sarah, only for Izzie Stevens to incorrectly read her chart and give her to the wrong medication making her transplant impossible. Bailey then headed to Los Angeles with Sarah, where her sister and a possible donor, lived and Addison and the Oceanside Wellness Group helped Bailey find her a transplant while, in Seattle, the ramifications of Izzie's mistake led to her being fired.

In the Private Practice episode "Right Here, Right Now", Addison and Sam became involved in the case which was complicated when Sarah's sister tested HIV positive, making Addie, Sam and Bailey question the ethics of the situation. After twisting the arm of Charlotte, Bailey and Sam perform surgery on Sarah and give her her sister's kidney. This crossover allowed Sam to return to surgery (which would become important in the following episode "Pushing the Limits") and also showcased the end of the flirtatious relationship between Sam and Bailey established in "Ex-Life", during the previous crossover.

In regards to this crossover, "Invasion" isn't regarded as part of the crossover as this episode introduced the patient who only later crossed over with Bailey.

Sloan's Daughter Crossover, January 2010Edit

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Mark and Sloan weigh up the risks of going ahead with the surgery with Arizona and Addison.

The second crossover of Season Six, and also the second patient-centered crossover. The scene is set for this crossover in Holidaze, where Mark Sloan discovers he has an 18 year old daughter who is carrying his grandchild. In the first part of the crossover, Lexie performs an ultrasound on Sloan Riley, Mark's daughter, and discovers something concerning: bands of amniotic tissue were wrapped around the fetus' legs. Upon learning that no one at Seattle Grace is qualified to deal with the situation, Mark calls in Addison from L.A. to perform the surgery. However, when Addison and Sloan were in surgery, it was gets complicated due to Sloan's uteran arteries being enlarged and getting in the way. Addison tries to convince Sloan she can handle the risky procedure, but Sloan made her "shut it down."

Later realizing he has made a mistake, Lexie suggests that Mark take Sloan to L.A. for Addison to do the surgery there, and Mark agrees. After Mark says that Sloan may live with him after the baby is born, he and Lexie break up, as she cannot deal with being a grandmother yet. Mark asks Lexie not to make him choose between her and Sloan, because Sloan will win, so he and Lexie break up.

In the second part of the crossover, Mark takes Sloan to the Oceanside Wellness Group, so that Addison can perform the operation she was supposed to do in Seattle. Within minutes of arriving, Mark gets Addison naked, and they 'do the McNasty' in Addison's office. Addison performs the surgery successfully. Mark deliberates staying in L.A. to work with Addison, Sam, Naomi and the others, but in the end Addison convinces him not to, because he still loves Lexie.

Amelia's Crossover, October 2010Edit

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Amelia presenting the man with a tumor as a peace offer for Derek.

This crossover took yet another different spin, this time looking at the brother-sister relationship of Derek and Amelia. It also looked at Derek's growing relationship with Cristina after she saved his life at the end of Season 6 during The Shooting. There was also an element of the patient-centered setup as seen during the last two crossovers, as the other elements revolve around the case. However, this is a much weaker feature than before, with the main focus being on the first two features.

The crossover begins in the Private Practice episode "Short Cuts", when Addison pushes Amelia to fly to Seattle to reconcile with estranged brother Derek. Amelia does so, bringing with her a man that she met on the plane who she suspects might have a brain tumor, though this is only because he had pudgy hands which Derek discovered she found out because the man "had his hands on her breasts at the time" and it was a "mile-high hookup." Amelia convinces Derek to admit the patient, and puts Cristina on the patient, as he is currently trying to help her overcome her fear of the O.R. following her recent trauma of saving Derek's live with a gun to her head (for more information, see Death and All His Friends).

When looking at scans of the brain surgery patient's head, Cristina refuses to give any ideas about how to approach it, leading Amelia to believing that she is an incapable surgeon, saying, "why don't we just shoot the guy now?" which Derek takes immediate offense to, saying, "don't talk about shooting people in this hospital." Amelia wants to scrub in, and Cristina is more than willing to let her, but Derek won't let it happen and demands that Cristina book an O.R., which she does, but unwillingly.

Derek then explains to Meredith how Amelia was a drug addict, and how she stole their mother's prescription pad to write herself a prescription for pain pills before crashing his car and overdosing, forcing him to save her. As Derek and Amelia are scrubbing in for the surgery, Amelia confronts Derek about how he won't talk about his own shooting or her father's, which happened when she was 5. Cristina shows up to the surgery late and Derek relents, allowing Amelia to scrub in.

Derek continues to try to push Cristina to help out with the surgery, but in the end gives up as she refuses to help out, allowing Amelia to step in. After the surgery, Cristina asks, "can I go now then?" and Derek allows it. Amelia calls Cristina "a dud," and Derek gets angry and kicks her out after saying that Cristina saved his life and he owes her "everything." He then brings Cristina to a cadaver and walks her back through the process of how she operated on him. He forces her to take a scalpel and do it again. She hesitates, then makes the first cut. He asks what happened next and she continues the process, slowly regaining confidence.

Derek meets up with his sister outside the hospital and tells her the story of when their father was shot. As he tells her the story, she recalls trying to move toward her dad, "but I couldn't move." He told her he was holding her so tight she couldn't budge. He also tried to keep her quiet as the men left. "You were so little," he says, adding that he's probably always wanted her to remain "the little one -- quiet and safe." But she's neither. She's "loud and fearless and it scares the crap out of [him]." He says he didn't want to tell her he'd been shot because he didn't want her to know that pain exists. Amelia then returns to L.A., now on speaking terms with her brother again. Like "Invasion" in regards to Bailey's Crossover, "Short Cuts" is not regarded as part of this crossover.

Finding a Cure for Erica, February 2012Edit

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Derek and Amelia explaining the procedure to Erica, Cooper and Charlotte, with Lexie watching them.

Amelia crossed over to consult with Derek on Erica's case. Driven by the thought of saving Mason's mother, Amelia managed to come up with a difficult neurosurgical procedure to try. Adding to the diffulty of the procedure itself, it had to be completed within 90 seconds or Erica would stroke out on the table. Therefore, Amelia asked Derek to help her out. After practicing all day long in the skills lab, they finally managed to pull it off within the 90 seconds, and Derek allowed Amelia to call Cooper to bring Erica over to Seattle.

Derek and Amelia successfully pulled off the procedure and this strengthened their bond. Amelia and Derek talked about Amelia's addiction after the surgery, with him offering to fly to LA every time she started craving some pills to knock some sense into her. She on the other hand felt more for remembering the successful procedure they just did and thereby having saved Erica's life.

Cooper, Charlotte, and Mason accompanied Erica to Seattle Grace Mercy West Hospital, but since they did so in the episode airing under Private Practice credits, they are not considered having crossed over from one show to another. 

Crossover AppearancesEdit

Image Character May 2008 February 2009 October 2009 January 2010 October 2010 Total
GAS6MeredithGrey7 Meredith Grey Yes Yes* No Yes* Yes 4
CristinaYangS6Promo Cristina Yang Yes Yes* No Yes* Yes 4
IzzieStevensS6 Izzie Stevens Yes Yes* No N/A N/A 2
AlexKarevS6 Alex Karev Yes Yes No Yes* Yes 4
GAS4GeorgeOMalley2 George O'Malley Yes Yes* N/A N/A N/A 2
GAS6MirandaBailey10 Miranda Bailey Yes Yes Yes Yes* Yes 5
RichardWebber Richard Webber Yes Yes No Yes* Yes 4
CallieTorresGAS6Promo Callie Torres Yes Yes* No Yes* Yes 4
MarkSloanS6 Mark Sloan Yes Yes No Yes Yes 4
LexieGreyS6Promo Lexie Grey Yes Yes* No Yes* Yes 4
Erica Hahn Erica Hahn Yes N/A N/A N/A N/A 1
GAS9OwenHunt4 Owen Hunt N/A Yes* No Yes* Yes 3
6x11-19 Teddy Altman N/A N/A N/A Yes* Yes 2
ArizonaRobbinsS6 Arizona Robbins N/A Yes* No Yes* Yes 3
AprilKepnerS9 April Kepner N/A N/A No No Yes 1
JacksonAveryS9 Jackson Avery N/A N/A No No Yes 1
DerekShepherdS6 Derek Shepherd Yes Yes No Yes* Yes 4
AddisonMontgomeryS3 Addison Forbes Montgomery Yes Yes Yes Yes No 4
PeteWilderS3 Pete Wilder No Yes** Yes Yes** No 3
NaomiBennettS3 Naomi Bennett No Yes Yes Yes** No 3
CooperFreedmanS3 Cooper Freedman No Yes** Yes Yes** No 3
CharlotteKingS3 Charlotte King No Yes** Yes Yes** No 3
DellParkerS3 Dell Parker No Yes** Yes Yes** N/A 3
SamBennettS3 Sam Bennett No Yes Yes Yes** No 3
VioletTurnerS3 Violet Turner No Yes** Yes Yes** No 3
PP3x19-5 Amelia Shepherd N/A N/A N/A N/a Yes 1
*Appears only in Grey's Anatomy during the crossover
**Appears only in Private Practice during the crossover
"N/A" implies that the character was either not yet in the show, or had left the show
Note: If the crossover episode only occurs in either Grey's Anatomy or Private Practice, then it is not specified if the character only appeared in one of the two shows

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