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August 24, 2013

Women We Love: Kerry Washington

by Curtis John

Kerry is so very … well, everything!

The Bronx-born movie star of such hit films as Django Unchained, Ray, and Save the Last Dance, and one of television’s top leading ladies in her ABC show Scandal, Washington has one of those careers that actors covet.

About half of that has to do with the vulnerability she’s able to emote on screen—her infamous lip quiver and wet, almond eyes when she’s thinking too hard about a decision she already knows the answer to—which is enough to warm any man’s heart and encourage her leading men to step up their game. But when you couple that with the other half—her boldness and confidence—then you have female characters that on an emotional level are complex and the reverse from the hollow “types” too many actresses are often portrayed as and black actresses are constantly burdened with. Think the sexy and brash but emotionally scarred Nikki Tru from Chris Rock’s I Think I Love My Wife (2007) or Patricia, the headstrong ex-Black Panther Party widow with a deep secret in Tanya Hamilton’s Night Catches Us (2010), and it’s easy to see why Washington is so very desired by filmmakers. And, oh yeah, she’s pretty easy on the eyes, as well.

Interestingly, Washington graduated from Spence School, a New York City all-girls grade school with a focus on athletics and the arts that was also attended by Gwyneth Paltrow and Emmy Rossum, two other actresses that have led strong and unapologetic careers.

Earlier this year, Washington appeared in the Tina Gordon Chism-directed and Tyler Perry-produced comedy Peeples. But it’s her role as Olivia Pope in the Shonda Rhimes-produced TV political drama Scandal that has brought on much of the recent buzz for Washington’s abilities. The series has been renewed for a third season and the actress is currently nominated for her first Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series. Competing against such formidable actresses as Claire Danes (Homeland) and Elisabeth Moss (Mad Men), Washington’s Emmy fate will be revealed on September 22.

Follow Limité Film Contributor Curtis John on Twitter (@MediaManWatchand check out his blog, brotherfromadiffrentworld.tumblr.com.

posted by: Curtis John
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