Scandal season 2 continues on Thursday, February 14 with an episode called "Whiskey Tango Foxtrot." BuddyTV caught up with Kerry Washington during a set visit last month to talk about what it's like to play Olivia Pope on the show.
"She has the posture of power, that's for sure."
The inspiration behind the show is a real-life fixer of sorts, Judy Smith, and Washington uses her help whenever she can. "Judy's a producer on the show, so she's around all the time. Very early on during the pilot she said 'here are all my numbers, you can reach me all the time.' I'm very grateful that nobody warned Judy how hungry I am for information and how important research is to me. In the beginning she was like, 'yeah call me anytime' and now she's like, 'What, Kerry??' (laughs) We talk at least once for every episode." Washington said, adding "She's taller and much more elegant than I am. She has the posture of power, that's for sure."
"She wears the pants."
Ever wonder why it seems like Olivia Pope is only seen in pants, except in flashbacks? Well, there's a reason for that. "We decided early on that Olivia Pope only wears pants. That's slowly going to start to change a little bit, but she wears the pants, metaphorically and literally. She's the boss in her office, she is in control at Pope and Associates, so she wears the pants. But in flashbacks she wears a lot of skirts and I discovered while shooting [episode] 2.11 that it's hard to the modern day Olivia walk in a skirt. It's a walk that's built for pants and I actually have to stride differently when I don't have pants on, which I think is so fascinating." Washington revealed.
"She really, really does care about people."
Olivia is not without her faults, but ultimately her intentions are good. Asked about her character, Washington said, "I do think that probably one of Olivia's greatest assets, and one of her faults, as a person is that she cares so deeply. She really, really does care about people and she wants to fix things; not just situations but everything. Judy Smith is like that; she wants to fix problems whether it's the woman behind her in Starbucks or a client that walks into her office. So a lot of that I think comes from Judy. But I think also part of what makes everybody at Pope and Associates so good at what they do is that they all have really personal experiences with crisis in their own their own lives. So when a client walks into the office of Pope and Associates, they all come from a place of compassion because they know what it feels like.
What do you think of what Washington said about Olivia's intentions on the show? Do you think we saw that in the latest episode of Scandal?
Scandal airs on Thursdays at 10/9C on ABC.
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(Image courtesy of ABC)