Kerry Washington covers the March 2020 issue of InStyle magazine photographed by Sebastian Faena and styled by Law Roach.
On Hollywood’s current synergistic state: “We are really pouring into each other,” Washington says. “We became a sisterhood in the industry across different roles and, in particular, with fellow actresses. We are so invested now and we understand each other.”
On working with men and women: “I’m doing a project with two co-producers who are black men, and it’s a different kind of safety. In a room full of women, I still have to translate my blackness, in a way,” she says. “In these rooms there is another kind of safety that comes from speaking to the same cultural, racial identity.”
On creating more opportunities for people of color: “Being No. 1 on the call sheet for a show as historic as Scandal, where the stakes were so high and meant possible opportunities for other actresses of color, that felt like a real test.”
On asking Reese Witherspoon for advice on her production company: “I knew that Reese had several production companies through the years and had learned a lot during the various stages of their development. I said to her, ‘You’re killing it now, but tell me all the mistakes you made so I don’t have to reinvent the wheel.’ ” Witherspoon obliged and then revealed something surprising: “She said, ‘Not a single other actress has called me to have this conversation.’ ”
On Scandal changing her role in the industry: “I would disappear into these different roles, and, you know, nobody was connecting that the woman from Save the Last Dance was the same woman from Ray who was the same person from The Last King of Scotland. They are totally different humans, and that was great for me. I got to really keep my life and not have it disrupted in a big way. That changed with the one-two punch of Scandal and Django Unchained.”
On keeping kids out of the public eye: “These are their lives. But it’s not about pulling a Rapunzel and hiding them away in a castle from the world— we don’t want to do that,” she says. “I think any parent would want to keep kids from a situation that causes them to feel scared. I don’t want them to be exploited, particularly in this social-media world.”
On her Golden Globes daring ensemble: “Isla Fisher was at a table with J.Lo, and Isla was like, ‘I’m so stressed out. I just feel like Kerry’s jacket is going to fly open, and it’s going to be a disaster,’ ” Washington says, laughing. “Jennifer Lopez, who is the queen of Topstick, just turned to her and said, ‘She’s fine!’ Jennifer and I are from the same neighborhood in the Bronx, so she’s always looked out for me.”
March issue of InStyle magazine available February 14th.
Cover 1: Dries Van Noten Dress | Bulgari Earrings and Bracelet
Cover 2: Louis Vuitton Dress and Brooch | Chopard Earrings
Image 1: Richard Quinn Jumpsuit with Cape | Tiffany & Co. Necklace and Rings
Image 2: Prada Coat | Chopard Hoops | Sydney Evan Necklaces | Dale Novick Ltd. Rings (Righ Ring and Left Index Fingers) | Giuseppe Zanotti Pumps
[Photo Credit: Sebastian Faena/InStyle Magazine]