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A Comprehensive Look at Kerry Washington’s Movies and TV Shows

Kerry Washington’s Movies and TV shows is a well-known actress who has been in several successful films and television series. She first attracted attention for her parts in films such as Ray and The Last King of Scotland before getting her breakout role as Olivia Pope on the hit TV show Scandal.

Washington was born in NYC in 1977. She went to George Washington University. graduating with a double major in anthropology and sociology. During college, she began pursuing acting roles, appearing in some small productions. After graduating, she continued honing her craft on stage and screen.

Her breakthrough came when she was hired as Ray Charles’ wife, Della Bea Robinson, in the 2004 movie Ray, starring Jamie Foxx. Her impassioned performance won her critical praise. This propelled her career to new heights, with appearances in Mr. & Mrs. Smith, Fantastic Four, and The Last King of Scotland with Forest Whitaker. 

Breakout Role in Ray

Kerry Washington’s breakthrough role was as Ray Charles’ wife, Della Bea Robinson, in the 2004 biopic, Ray. Taylor Hackford directed the film, which recounted the life and career of Ray Charles, the iconic musician.

During the audition process, Washington beat out numerous other actresses for the role of Della Bea. Despite playing a supporting role, it was her first significant film role after acting in lesser films and television shows.

As Charles’ long-suffering wife, Washington added richness and depth to the character amidst the singer’s problems and swift climb to fame. She held her own in sequences with Oscar-winner Jamie Foxx, who gave an outstanding performance as Ray Charles.

Despite having less screen time than the film’s lead, critics praised Washington’s emotional range and screen presence as Della Bea. Her performance against Foxx showcased her ability to connect with her scene partners and create a modest yet strong acting performance.

For her breakout turn in the film, Washington earned nominations for Best Supporting Actress at the BET Awards and Black Reel Awards in 2005. While she did not take home those awards, Ray marked a significant milestone in her career. It proved she could captivate audiences even without a leading role, setting the stage for more prominent parts.

The success of Ray, both critically and commercially, provided significant exposure for Kerry Washington as an actress on the rise. Though not yet a household name, her turn as Della Bea represented a breakthrough that brought her talents to a wider audience. It was a key stepping stone on her path to stardom.

Scandal TV Series

Kerry Washington’s breakthrough role came as Olivia Pope on the smash ABC drama series Scandal. The show ran for 7 seasons from 2012 to 2018 and turned Washington into a household name.

She starred as Olivia Pope, a former White House Communications Director who started her crisis management firm. Pope becomes embroiled in various scandals in Washington D.C. and has an on-again, off-again relationship with the President, played by Tony Goldwyn.

Washington’s portrayal of the powerful, sophisticated Olivia Pope earned her critical acclaim. She was the first African-American woman to lead a network TV drama in nearly 40 years. Washington garnered Emmy nominations for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series in 2013 and 2014 for her work on Scandal. 

The success of Scandal cemented Washington’s status as a leading lady in Hollywood. Her fashionable character also became a style icon, dubbed “The Olivia Pope Effect.” The show developed an extremely devoted fanbase and was one of ABC’s highest-rated dramas during its run. Scandal established Washington as a versatile actress who could command complex, nuanced roles.

Django Unchained

Kerry Washington received a prominent part as Broomhilda in Quentin Tarantino’s Oscar-winning film Django Unchained (2012). The film starred Jamie Foxx as Django, a liberated slave who teams up with a bounty hunter played by Christoph Waltz to save his wife Broomhilda from a plantation. 

Washington’s role as Broomhilda requires her to portray a character who has survived terrible trauma and abuse while remaining resilient. She lent richness and depth to the character, portraying both strength and vulnerability. Critics praised her impressive performance, with several pointing out the emotional range she demonstrated.

Django Unchained was a significant critical and economic success, grossing more than $425 million worldwide. It received five Academy Award nominations, winning two: Best Original Screenplay and Best Supporting Actor for Christoph Waltz. The film tackled issues of racism and slavery in the antebellum South in signature Tarantino style, known for its graphic violence paired with dark humor.

Washington held her own against the star-studded cast and excelled in bringing the critical character of Broomhilda to life. Her role in Django Unchained raised her profile in Hollywood and marked a key point in her ascension to stardom.

Other Notable Movies

Kerry Washington has starred in several acclaimed and memorable films throughout her career. Some of her other most notable movie roles include:

In The Last King of Scotland (2006), Washington played Kay Amin, the wife of Ugandan tyrant Idi Amin, alongside Forest Whitaker’s Oscar-winning portrayal. The film portrays Amin’s dictatorship through the eyes of a fictional Scottish doctor. Washington’s portrayal of the complex first lady earned her critical praise.

Lakeview Terrace (2008) – This thriller casts Washington as Lisa Mattson, who moves next door to a racist cop played by Samuel L. Jackson. The cop begins to terrorize the interracial couple, leading to a deadly confrontation. Washington held her own against Jackson’s intimidating performance.

Mother and Child (2009) – Washington earned an NAACP Image Award nomination for her performance in this drama that weaves together the stories of three women affected by adoption. She played Lucy, a woman who put her baby up for adoption as a teenager. Her emotional performance was considered a standout of the film.

Django Unchained (2012) – In Quentin Tarantino’s Oscar-winning Western, Washington played Broomhilda Von Shaft, the enslaved wife of the title character played by Jamie Foxx. Her character is the motivation behind Django’s quest as he tries to reunite with his wife. Washington brought heart and poignancy to the role.

In these films and others, Washington has proven her ability to take on complex, dramatic roles across multiple genres from hard-hitting dramas to action thrillers. Her talent and versatility as an actress have shone through many notable performances.

Voice Acting Roles

Kerry Washington has provided her voice for several popular animated films and television shows. One of her early voice acting appearances was in the 2006 Pixar Picture Cars, where she played Natalie Certain. She went on to play Alicia Masters in the 2005 film Fantastic Four and its 2007 sequel, Fantastic 4: Rise of the Silver Surfer. 

On television, Washington has had voice-acting roles on shows like Family Guy, The Simpsons, and Black Panther. She voiced herself in a 2016 episode of Family Guy titled “Bookie of the Year”. She also voiced a character named Abigail in a 2010 episode of The Simpsons called “Judge Me Tender”. One of her most notable TV voice roles has been playing Princess Shuri in the animated series Black Panther.

In addition to films and TV, Kerry Washington has also lent her voice to video games. She voiced the character of Lucia in the 2009 game Dante’s Inferno and voiced Princess Alicia in the game Mercenaries 2: World in Flames. Her ability to bring characters to life through voice acting has allowed her to expand her acting career beyond just live-action roles.

Stage Roles

Kerry Washington’s Movies and TV shows got her start in theater, appearing in numerous Broadway and off-Broadway productions early in her career. Some of her most notable stage roles include:

  • Race – In 2010, Kerry starred in the Broadway play Race, written by David Mamet. She played the role of Susan, a new associate at a law firm who gets chosen to defend a wealthy white man accused of raping a black woman. The play examined racial politics and tensions in America. Kerry’s performance earned her a Tony Award nomination.
  • The Last King of Scotland – In 2007, Kerry took on the role of Kay Amin in the off-Broadway production of The Last King of Scotland. Based on the novel by Giles Foden, the play follows the fictionalized story of Idi Amin’s physician during his regime in Uganda in the 1970s. Kerry portrayed Kay, one of Amin’s wives.
  • Fucking A – Kerry garnered critical praise for her performance as Hester Smith in the off-Broadway play Fucking A in 2003. The show was written by Pulitzer Prize winner Suzan-Lori Parks and loosely based on Nathaniel Hawthorne’s novel The Scarlet Letter. Kerry played an abortionist named Hester living in a dystopian world.
  • Other Roles – Some of Kerry’s other significant stage credits include parts in off-Broadway shows like Citizen: An American Lyric and Gem of the Ocean. Earlier in her career, she appeared in Broadway productions of A Time to Kill and On the Town.

Kerry Washington’s work in theater demonstrates her strong acting abilities and versatility as a performer. Her stage roles have provided her with a solid foundation that has continued to serve her in her onscreen career.

Upcoming Projects

Kerry Washington’s Movies and TV shows have several exciting projects in the works. She is set to star in the sci-fi thriller Little Fires Everywhere opposite Reese Witherspoon. The limited Hulu series is based on the 2017 bestselling novel by Celeste Ng. Washington and Witherspoon will both executive produce the series.

For Netflix, Washington will produce and star in The School for Good and Evil, directed by Paul Feig. The fantasy film is based on the popular book series about a school that trains the next generation of fairytale heroes and villains.

On the big screen, Washington will appear in The Fighting Shirley Chisholm, a biopic about the first Black Congresswoman who ran for President in 1972. The film will follow Chisholm’s historic presidential campaign and Washington is producing the film in addition to playing the lead role.

Washington is also attached to star in 24-7, an original comedy for Universal Pictures. She will play a workaholic mother who gets a clone of herself to parent her family, allowing her to focus on her career.

Washington is working on several television projects with her production business, Simpson Street, including adaptations of Goldie Vance and City of Saints and Thieves. She also intends to direct an episode for the second season of her Hulu series Little Fires Everywhere.

Washington has a busy schedule planned. She continues to balance acting, producing, and directing, with a focus on projects that empower women and promote diversity. Fans can expect to see Washington’s brilliance shine across different genres.

Impact and Legacy

Kerry Washington’s Movies and TV shows have unquestionably influenced Black actors in television and movies. Her breakthrough role as Olivia Pope on Scandal became the first Black female protagonist on a network TV drama in nearly 40 years. Washington’s portrayal of Olivia Pope challenged stereotypes and paved the path for more diverse representation on television.

Critics widely praise Washington’s performances and presence on screen. She brings complexity and nuance to her roles, imbuing her characters with strength, vulnerability, and humanity. Though she starred in several earlier films, Washington’s work on Scandal cemented her status as a household name. She has leveraged her fame and talent to champion greater diversity in Hollywood and advocate for equal rights.

Washington continues to choose interesting and socially relevant projects that provide a platform for highlighting important issues. She is revered as a trailblazer who opened doors for other Black actors. Her poise and talent on camera established Washington as a role model. She is lauded for transcending stereotypes and demonstrating the power and potential of dynamic, leading roles for Black women. Washington’s impact will continue to be felt as entertainment becomes more inclusive and reflective of diverse experiences.


Kerry Washington’s Movies and TV shows have had a successful and eclectic career in cinema, television, and theatre. She originally rose to prominence in the film Ray, where she played Ray Charles’ wife. Her career, however, skyrocketed when she starred as Olivia Pope on the blockbuster television series Scandal. This complicated main role sealed her reputation as a household figure. Visit our Website Time Speed Magazine.

Washington has also appeared in significant films such as Django Unchained, demonstrating her flexibility as an actress. She has provided voiceovers for animated films and television shows. In addition to her on-screen work, Washington has a strong background in theatre, having been in Broadway shows such as American Son.

Looking ahead, Washington has many fascinating projects in the works. She is set to star in and produce some films and television projects over the next few years. Given her commitment to playing hard, complex characters in a variety of genres, Washington will undoubtedly continue to impress audiences. Her career thus far has demonstrated outstanding breadth and depth.

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