Kerry Washington Says She Has “Spent a Lifetime Trying to Not Be an Actor” But Then “Extraordinary” Scripts Come Across Her Desk

Kerry Washington is reflecting on the moments in her life when she has felt like she may be done with Hollywood, only to be drawn back in by an “extraordinary” script.

In a profile for W magazine’s W TV Portfolio 2023, Washington admitted that she has spent her life trying not to be an actor.

“I am always quitting this business, and then right when I decide that I’m done is when something extraordinary comes across my desk,” she told W. “I was really, really done with this business right before I read the script for Ray. I was really, really done with this business right before I read the script for The Last King of Scotland. I was entirely done with this business before reading the script for Scandal. This is what happens again and again.”

W’s portfolio this year also included Matthew Macfadyen, Sheryl Lee Ralph, Meghann Fahy and more of TV’s biggest stars of 2023.

In his profile, Macfadyen shared a few things from Succession, noting that when he first heard the name of his character, Tom Wambsgans, he felt like it was the clue to everything in the series.

“It’s a weird, hard-to-sit-in-the-mouth sort of name,” the Emmy winner said. “It sounds like ‘womb’ and ‘glands’ mixed together. It’s strange and not quite right. And he’s a sort of interloper in a family called Roy, which has its roots in the French word for ‘king.’”

The actor added that his favorite Tom quote is probably “Buckle up, fucklehead,” and admitted it’s “weird” that people are probably starstruck by him when they see him in the street now.

“Sometimes they do a double take, and then look at me and start laughing at me because of Tom,” he said. “It’s coming from a good place, but it is slightly bumpy sometimes.”

Fahy, who plays Daphne Sullivan on The White Lotus season two, opened up about how she and co-star Aubrey Plaza coined the term “Zen Mommy” for her character.

“She’s one of these women you see on Instagram who always has a baby on her hip and is wearing this effortlessly flowy, beautiful dress that probably cost her $4,000,” Fahy said. “Everything seems simple, and that was Daphne to me. She’s my Zen Mommy.”

The Emmy nominee also recalled being starstruck when she met Taylor Swift and “almost threw up” when she saw her from across the room.

“I just started crying involuntarily. I was so embarrassed,” the Bold Type star said. “I was like, ‘I cannot say hello to her with tears in my eyes.’ I have to pretend to be seminormal, but I don’t think I fooled her. She put her arm around me, and she was like, ‘You’re fine.’”

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