Sheryl Lee Ralph knew this moment would come—and she's not planning on letting it slip away anytime soon.
The star of ABC's Abbott Elementary, which won the TV Scoop Award for Favorite Comedy Series Aug. 29, not only hopes her show follows in the footsteps of a beloved network compatriot—but Sheryl wants to be there every step of the way.
"Listen, I am really hoping that we are just like Grey's Anatomy," Sheryl exclusively told E! News. "On Grey's Anatomy, the characters might change, but the show will go on! Some stay forever. I'm hoping to stay there as long as God and [creator] Quinta [Brunson] will have me."
Abbott Elementary, which premieres its second season Sept. 21, has a long way to go to match Grey's Anatomy, which enters its 19th season in a tie with Lassie and NCIS as the sixth longest-running scripted American primetime television series in history.
But hey, we're more than ready to see Miss Barbara Howard mold Philadelphia's impressionable minds for another couple of decades.
While Abbott Elementary's success—it also earned seven Emmy nominations, including Outstanding Comedy Series and a nod for Ralph for Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series—has been a breath of fresh air, the veteran actress saw it coming almost immediately.
"I have to tell you, I knew the show was going to be a success," Sheryl said. "Tyler [James Williams] and I had a moment together when we were shooting the pilot where we both knew we were doing something very special. We had just finished a scene and were just standing there together on the set, we looked at each other and I said, 'Uhhh...,' and he said, 'Yeah, you feel it don't you?' I said, 'Absolutely I feel it.' I could feel that this was something very special. We both knew it."
Despite her knack for predicting the show's vitality, don't think for a moment that Sheryl takes any of it for granted.
"This is my time. Just like anybody else out there, don't ever give up on your dream," Sheryl proclaimed. "Don't ever give up on yourself. Hang in there, because what is for you will never, ever, ever miss you. It just cannot."
Spoken like a true educator.
The second season of Abbott Elementary premieres Sept. 21 at 9 p.m. on ABC. To check out the rest of the 2022 TV Scoop Award winners, click here.
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