Oh the ladies are pretty in shades pink on the recent cover of The Hollywood Reporter!
Scandal’s Kerry Washington, American Crime’s Regina King and Shades of Blue’s Jennifer Lopez shared the stage with Julianna Margulies, Sarah Paulson, Kirsten Dunst and Constance Zimmer. In a great roundtable, the primetime leading actresses talk about being called a “diva” on set, on-screen nudity, navigating roles and being a woman in Hollywood.
“You have a little bit of a safety [on network television]. Part of it for me is the director and the producers and that trust. There have been times in my career where the nudity wasn’t about the story, it wasn’t about the character, it was just because that shit sells,” Washington said.
“It’s the opposite for me once I had kids. In videos and things that I do, I’m very sexy and wear little clothes, but the truth is, when it comes to acting, I did it earlier in my career and now I just don’t feel sometimes that you have to do it. I’ve changed in that sense, Lopez admitted.
“But sometimes you already have the job and the nudity conversation didn’t come up until a couple seasons in. And then you get that script and go, “Whoa, oh, hmm …” (Mimics dialing her lawyer). The particular situation that I’m thinking of [onSouthland], I didn’t feel like [the scene] was honest to the character: If Lydia was going to have sex, I just didn’t see her having sex like that. And they got it. They were respectful,” King said.
On being labeled a diva:
“I got a moniker of being “the diva,” which I never felt I deserved — which I don’t deserve — because I’ve always been a hard worker, on time, doing what I’m supposed to do, and getting that label because you reach a certain amount of success …,” says Lopez.
On what their roles have taught them:
“Every project I’ve worked on, as a whole I’ve learned something — not so much that the character that I’m playing has taught me something, but the people whom I’m working with or the story that’s being told has taught me something about people. With American Crime, it was that so many people think that black people can’t be elitist, that a Black elitist doesn’t exist. I’m just surprised how many people are so shocked that Terri [the well-to-do, strict mom to basketball player Kevin, played by Trevor Jackson] actually exists. I’m like, you don’t know a Terri? I could show you three,” King said, laughing.
“I have to love the person I’m playing — even if you have a hard time loving them, I have to love them. For me, it was tricky because as a producer [on Confirmation], I wanted to produce a film about the hearings that was really complicated and where you felt pulled toward all of the characters. And I wanted all of the actors to feel enormous compassion for their [characters]. This is not a he said, she said; it’s a real, complicated portrait of how everybody was doing the best they could with what they had at the time. But as an actor, I was like, “It’s all about Anita [Hill].” (Laughs.) So, the developing of the script was where I really tried to lean into the other characters and make sure that the story felt very balanced and that I felt compassion toward all of them; but there was a point about two weeks before shooting where I was like, ‘Peace out, you’re on your own, I got her now and you guys have to protect those other people,'” Washington said.
Read all the ladies sound off in its entirety here.