Troubling Times for Dr. McDreamy

The stars of "Grey's Anatomy" are talking up the renewed rivalry between Patrick Dempsey's Dr. McDreamy and his old rival Dr. McSteamy, while playing down his real-life confrontation with Isaiah Washington.

Dempsey, 40, and Washington, 43, have made amends after a heated confrontation over delays in shooting, their representatives say.

"Differences are inevitable," Washington's publicist, Cynthia Snyder, said in a statement. "They were aired, resolved, and everyone has moved on."

Dempsey's spokeswoman agreed.

"There was an argument on set. In any close-knit family, sometimes people argue. But everybody made up and went back to work."

Dane's Return to Spice Up Season 3

The show has been No. 1 in the Nielsen ratings for two of the first three weeks of its new season, which began last week, and things are heating up.

Dempsey's Dr. Derek Shepherd -- otherwise known as "Dr. McDreamy" -- once again has to contend with the return of Eric Dane.

Dane plays Dr. Mark Sloane -- aka "Dr. McSteamy" -- the plastic surgeon who broke up Shepherd's marriage.

He'll now be a regular on the show.

"As far as I know, I was doing one episode. That's what I signed up for. But because of who the character was, there was a lot of room for him to come back," Dane said to ABC News Radio.

"I got real lucky. They invited me back."

The ladies of the cast agree that Dane's return was inevitable.

"I think it was due to the overwhelming popularity of McSteamy," said Ellen Pompeo, who plays Dr. Meredith Grey.

"I think the girls just responded to him, and they just got so much fan mail, you know. The girls went absolutely crazy," Pompeo said.

Dane says he doesn't know how his character will develop on the show, as the writers don't reveal how the season will play out.

He does know that Dr. McSteamy will continue to instigate trouble.

"It was just nasty how he showed up last season," he said, "and it continues to be nasty now."

"Grey's Anatomy" airs on ABC TV, a division of the Walt Disney Co., which is also the parent company of ABC News.