De Rossi herself made the decision to depart the Scandal series, saying, "I am incredibly grateful for my time here at Scandal.
This made her the first openly lesbian actress to play an openly lesbian character on television.Shonda, Betsy and the cast have been incredibly supportive of my decision. She said about the marriage that "it just obviously wasn't right for me." From 2000 to 2004, de Rossi dated director Francesca Gregorini, the daughter of Barbara Bach and the stepdaughter of Ringo Starr.She said that most of her family and Ally Mc Beal castmates did not know she was a lesbian until tabloid pictures of the couple were published.Soon afterwards she moved to Los Angeles, and won guest roles on several TV shows, and a permanent role in Nick Freno: Licensed Teacher, before landing a part in the film Scream 2. From 2003–06, de Rossi starred as Lindsay Bluth Fünke on Fox Television's Arrested Development. Kennedy, Jr.'s wife, Carolyn Bessette-Kennedy, in the made-for-TV movie America's Prince: The John F. Story in 2003; then, in the same year, 2003, she acted out the role of an Australian reporter who inspires a protest against Frank Sinatra during a concert tour in The Night We Called It a Day.During this time in the United States, de Rossi worked diligently to replace her Australian accent with her current American one. In 2005 she portrayed a fortune-teller named Zela in the Wes Craven thriller Cursed.