Kerry Marisa Washington (born January 31, 1977) is an
American actress. Since 2012, Washington has gained wide public
recognition for starring in the ABC drama Scandal, a Shonda Rhimes
series in which she plays Olivia Pope, a crisis management expert to
politicians and power brokers in Washington DC, and also is a
producer. For her role, she has been nominated twice for a
Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series,
Screen Actors Guild
Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Female
Actor in a Drama Series, and a
Golden Globe Award
Golden Globe Award for Best Actress in
a Television Series.
Washington is also known for her roles as Della Bea Robinson, in the
film Ray (2004), as Kay in The Last King of Scotland (2006), as Alicia
Masters in the live-action
Fantastic Four films of 2005 and 2007, and
as Broomhilda von Shaft in Quentin Tarantino's Django Unchained
(2012). She has also starred in the independent films Our Song (2000),
The Dead Girl
The Dead Girl (2006), Mother and Child (2009) and Night Catches Us
(2010). In 2016, she portrayed
Anita Hill in the
HBO television film
Confirmation and was nominated for a Primetime
Emmy Award for
Outstanding Lead Actress in a Limited Series or a Movie.
In April 2014, Time magazine included Washington in its annual "Time
1 Early life
3 Personal life
5 Awards and nominations
7 External links
Washington was born in the Bronx, New York City, the daughter of
Valerie, a professor and educational consultant, and Earl Washington,
a real estate broker. Her father's family is of African
American origin, having migrated from
South Carolina to Brooklyn. Her
mother's family is from Manhattan, and Washington has said that her
mother is from a "mixed-race background but from Jamaica, so she is
partly English and Scottish and Native American, but also descended
from African slaves in the Caribbean." Through her mother,
she is a cousin of former
U.S. Secretary of State
U.S. Secretary of State Colin Powell.
Washington performed with the
TADA! Youth Theater teen group and
Spence School in
Manhattan from her pre-teen years
until graduating from high school in 1994. At age 13, she was
taken to watch Nelson Mandela speak at Yankee Stadium upon his release
from prison. She attended George Washington University, graduating
Phi Beta Kappa
Phi Beta Kappa in 1998 with a double major in anthropology and
sociology. She also studied at
Michael Howard Studios in New
In April 2016, Washington confirmed that, in the 1990s in New York,
she learned to dance from Jennifer Lopez. During her appearance on The
Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, she told host
Jimmy Fallon that
"I've been taking dance for a long time, since I was a little girl. I
had this very inspiring teacher named Larry Maldonado, for anybody
from my neighborhood in the Bronx, he was our role model", Washington
continued, "And he had an awesome substitute teacher named Jennifer,
who would sometimes step in and teach. But, then she left to move to
Los Angeles and be on the TV show In Living Color. So, yes, I learned
to dance from JLo!" Washington verified.
Washington at the New York premiere of
She Hate Me
She Hate Me in 2004
Washington got her
Screen Actors Guild
Screen Actors Guild (SAG) card as a requirement for
a commercial that she starred in. Washington made her screen debut
in the ABC telefilm Magical Make-Over (1994). She was in the cast
of the 1996
PBS sketch comedy-style educational series Standard
Deviants, and she appeared in the short "3D" and the feature film
Our Song in 2000. She went on to appear in several movies,
Save the Last Dance
Save the Last Dance (2001) and The Human Stain (2003). In
2002 she played Chris Rock's love interest in the spy thriller Bad
Company, a film that represented a turning point for her, in that it
was the first time in her career that she had made enough money
annually to qualify for health insurance under SAG.
In 2004, she played the female lead in Spike Lee's She Hate Me, and
she received strong reviews for her performance. After 2004, she held
parts in Mr. & Mrs. Smith (2005), Little Man (2006), I Think I
Love My Wife (2007), and as a wife of 1970s Ugandan dictator Idi Amin
in the UK historical drama The Last King of Scotland (2006).
Washington has also appeared in the recurring role of Chelina Hall on
the ABC television series Boston Legal, and in several episodes of
the A&E cable-TV series 100 Centre Street. In 2007, she
co-directed and appeared in the music video for hip-hop artist
Common's song, "I Want You", the fourth single from his album Finding
Forever and became a spokesperson for L'Oréal, appearing in
commercials and ads alongside fellow actresses,
Scarlett Johansson and
Eva Longoria, Gong Li, Michelle Yeoh, Dian Sastrowardoyo, Aishwarya
Maya Karin and model Doutzen Kroes.
Washington at the premiere of Mother and Child at TIFF in 2009
Washington narrated the critically acclaimed documentary about the New
Orleans-based teenage TBC Brass Band, From the Mouthpiece on Back. She
also appears in Maxwell's "Bad Habits" video. In 2009 Washington
performed in The People Speak, a documentary feature film that uses
dramatic and musical performances of the letters, diaries, and
speeches of everyday Americans, based on historian Howard Zinn's A
People's History of the United States.
In 2010, she made her Broadway debut in David Mamet's Race, alongside
James Spader (with whom she worked on "Boston Legal"), David Alan
Grier, and Richard Thomas. She also appeared in Tyler Perry's 2010
film For Colored Girls. In October 2011, it was confirmed that she
would star in Quentin Tarantino's film Django Unchained, which was
released in 2012 and received widespread critical acclaim. She
was invited to join the
Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences
Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in
June 2012 along with 175 other individuals.
In 2013, Washington ranked No. 2 in People magazine's 100 Most
Beautiful people and was named Woman of the Year by Glamour
magazine. The same year, she ranked No. 20 on
annual list of the highest-paid actors in television and was announced
as the new face of
Neutrogena skin care. Washington hosted
Saturday Night Live
Saturday Night Live on November 2, 2013, where she impersonated
Michelle Obama and
Oprah Winfrey in a cold opening sketch that
satirized criticism of
Saturday Night Live
Saturday Night Live for not having had any
black female cast members for many years.
Since April 2012, Washington has starred in the ABC drama series
Scandal, created by Shonda Rimes, as Olivia Pope, a crisis manager who
runs her own crisis management firm called Pope & Associates in
Washington, D.C.. In this position, she works for high-profile
figures, most notably the President of the United States, who is also
her on-off lover. The show has been a commercial and critical success,
and has been called one of the most talked about drama series on
Twitter by BuzzFeed. Washington's performance
has earned positive reviews, and in 2013, she won the award for
Outstanding Actress in a Drama Series at the 44th NAACP Image Awards
and was also presented with the NAACP President's Award. The same
year, she was named "Favorite actress" and Scandal "Favorite Drama" of
the year at TV Guide's Magazine Fan Favorite Awards and was also
crowned 2013's "TV Star of the Year" by the editors of the
magazine. For her work in the second season of Scandal, Washington
was nominated for an Emmy at the 65th Primetime Emmy Awards and
66th Primetime Emmy Awards, becoming the first African-American
woman to be nominated in the category of Outstanding Lead Actress in a
Drama Series in 18 years. She was also nominated for a Screen
Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a
Drama Series as well as a
Golden Globe Award
Golden Globe Award for Best Actress in a
Television Drama Series.
In addition to Washington's acting, her costumes as
Olivia Pope have
attracted positive attention, prompting Vanity Fair to name the
character one of "The Top Ten Best-Dressed TV Characters" in 2013.
According to the show's costume designer, Lyn Paolo, the success of
Olivia Pope's wardrobe is based on "this idea of having [her
character] wear such soft, feminine colors in a man's world". In
2014, Washington and Paolo won the Influencer Award at the 2014 Ace
Fashion Awards for Olivia Pope's stylish clothes on the show.
The Boston Globe
The Boston Globe ranked Scandal tenth place of its list of "Top 10
political TV shows" in 2015.
In 2014, Washington announced her involvement in Malcolm D. Lee's Is
He the One? a romantic comedy from MGM. She played the lead role
in Confirmation, an
HBO movie directed by
Rick Famuyiwa about Anita
Hill's testimony during Clarence Thomas Supreme Court nomination,
which aired in 2016.
In August 2016, it was announced that Washington would be producing a
new ABC television show, Patrol, about female LAPD police
For her role in Confirmation, Washington was nominated for the
Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Limited Series
or Movie at the 68th Primetime Emmy Awards, as well as the
Critics' Choice Awards' equivalent the same year. Confirmation was
also nominated for the
Emmy Award for Outstanding Television Movie at
the Emmys, as well.
Washington at George Washington University, where she addressed the
graduates in 2013
Washington was engaged to actor
David Moscow from October 2004 to
March 2007. Washington married
Nnamdi Asomugha on June
24, 2013 in Hailey, Idaho. They have a daughter and a
As a sort of souvenir or memento, she usually tries to keep something
from every character that she plays, such as an item of wardrobe or a
piece of furniture from the house the character lived in. She has
a dog named Josie.
On May 19, 2013, she was the commencement speaker for her alma mater,
George Washington University. Before giving her commencement address
she was presented with an honorary Doctorate of Fine Arts.
In 2007, Washington and other celebrities joined for the 2007 Lee
National Denim Day, supporting the Women’s Cancer Programs of the
Entertainment Industry Foundation. In September 2012, Washington
spoke at the Democratic National Convention in favor of re-electing
Barack Obama, with her speech focusing on addressing voter apathy.
Washington is also a supporter of LGBT rights. In August 2013, she was
named an honorary chairperson of the GLSEN Respect Awards; and she
GLAAD Vanguard Award on March 21, 2015. In June
Human Rights Campaign
Human Rights Campaign released a video in tribute to the
victims of the 2016 Orlando gay nightclub shooting; in the video,
Washington and others told the stories of the people killed
She is a member of the Creative Coalition; which is a board of actors,
writers, musicians, and producers that explore issues that are at the
forefront of national discourse. She is also a member of V-Day, a
global movement that brings awareness to violence against women and
In March 2016, Washington and fellow
ShondaLand colleagues, Ellen
Viola Davis and Shonda Rhimes, appeared in a commercial
Hillary Clinton for President.
Washington at the
Metropolitan Opera in 2010
Save the Last Dance
Take the A Train
United States of Leland, TheThe United States of Leland
Human Stain, TheThe Human Stain
Against the Ropes
She Hate Me
Della Bea Robinson
Mr. & Mrs. Smith
Last King of Scotland, TheThe Last King of Scotland
Dead Girl, TheThe Dead Girl
I Think I Love My Wife
Put It in a Book
30,000 Leagues Under the Sea
Medical Officer Marissa Brau
Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer
Woman in Burka
Miracle at St. Anna
Life Is Hot in Cracktown
Mother and Child
Night Catches Us
For Colored Girls
Kelly / Blue
Details, TheThe Details
Thousand Words, AA Thousand Words
Broomhilda von Schaft
Natalie Certain (voice)
ABC Afterschool Special
Episode: "Magical Make-Over"
Episode: "Franco, My Dear, I Don't Give a Damn"
Episode: "The Undesirables"
Law & Order
Episode: "3 Dawg Night"
100 Centre Street
Guardian, TheThe Guardian
Episode: "The Next Life"
Episode: "Unaired Pilot"
Episode: "There's Something About Mira"
Princess Shuri / Baker Woman (voice)
Jimmy Kimmel Live
Episode: "After The Oscars"
Saturday Night Live
Episode: "Kerry Washington/Eminem"
How to Get Away with Murder
Guest star, 2 episodes
Ethel Barrymore Theatre
Awards and nominations
Main article: List of awards and nominations received by Kerry
Kerry Washington wedding certificate". E! News. July 3, 2013.
Missing or empty url= (help); access-date= requires url= (help)
^ "On This Day". The New York Times. January 31, 2009. Archived from
the original on March 4, 2016. Retrieved August 6, 2009.
^ Finn, Natalie (May 2, 2014). "
Kerry Washington Is a Mom! Check Out
Baby Isabelle Amarachi Asomugha's Birth Certificate". E! News.
Archived from the original on April 26, 2016. Retrieved May 2,
2016. Sidebar: Certificate of Live Birth: Isabelle Amarachi
Asomugha (County of Los Angeles Department of Public Health). Gives
Kerry Washington birth date. Archived from the original on May 2,
^ a b Note: FilmReference.com states "Born January 5, 1977 (some
sources cite 1975)…." at "
Kerry Washington Biography (1977?- )".
Archived from the original on March 3, 2016. Retrieved May 2,
^ Bricker, Tierney (May 13, 2011). "ABC picks up 'Charlie's Angels,'
'Good Christian Belles' and ten more". Archived from the original on
May 5, 2012. Retrieved October 1, 2012.
Kerry Washington 2014 Time". Retrieved April 26, 2014.
^ Stein, Ruthe (May 9, 2010). "Washington's 'Mother' instinct". The
San Francisco Chronicle. Retrieved September 21, 2010.
^ Collins, Lauren (October 24, 2004). "Kerry Washington: Politics and
Shabu Shabu". New York Times. Retrieved November 16, 2012.
^ Curtis, Nick (January 16, 2013). "
Kerry Washington on making Quentin
Tarantino's Django Unchained". Evening Standard. Retrieved May 17,
^ "So Who Knew? Washington Connects The Dots". Jamaica Observer.
October 14, 2012. Retrieved November 16, 2012.
^ Powell, Kevin (May 9, 2013). "Kerry Washington: Woman on Top".
Ebony. Retrieved May 17, 2013.
^ Leive, Cindi (September 3, 2013). "
Kerry Washington Talks Her New
Marriage, Scandal Style, and Her Real-Life Gladiators in Glamour's
October Issue". Glamour. Retrieved November 14, 2013.
^ a b Kamp, David. "Ms. Kerry Goes to Washington: The First Lady of
Scandal Speaks". Retrieved 2016-09-02.
^ a b c d e f g h i j "About Kerry Washington".
Retrieved October 1, 2012.
^ "INSIDE Black Girls Rock! Red Carpet Arrivals & What You Can
Expect From The Show". October 15, 2012. Retrieved November 16,
^ Park, Andrea (April 9, 2016). "
Kerry Washington Reveals Jennifer
Lopez Was Her Dance Teacher Growing Up: 'Cause We're From the
^ Lindig, Sarah (April 9, 2016). "
Kerry Washington Learned Her Dance
Moves from a Legend". ELLE.
^ a b "How Did You Get Your SAG-AFTRA Card?" TV Guide. January 13,
2014. p. 10.
Kerry Washington Bio". BuddyTV. Retrieved October 1, 2012.
^ "Kerry Washington". Retrieved October 1, 2012.
^ "the people speak". October 1, 2012.
^ "Django Unchained". Metacritic. Retrieved May 15, 2013.
Kerry Washington finally joins
Django Unchained as Django's wife".
October 26, 2011. Archived from the original on March 30, 2012.
Retrieved October 1, 2012.
^ "Academy Invites 176 to Membership". The Academy of Motion Picture
Arts and Sciences. June 29, 2012. Retrieved July 19, 2013.
^ "Kerry Washington, Kelly Rowland Land In PEOPLE 'Most Beautiful
Woman' Issue". Huffingtonpost. April 24, 2013. Retrieved May 18,
^ "Kerry Washington: The Gladiator". glamour.com. Retrieved November
Kerry Washington is the New Face of Neutrogena". ETonline. October
18, 2013. Retrieved November 1, 2013.
^ "'Saturday Night Live': 'Scandal's'
Kerry Washington signs on to
Eminem to perform". October 16, 2013. Retrieved November 1,
^ Hilton, Shani O (February 28, 2013). "Why
Twitter Loves "Scandal"".
BuzzFeed. Retrieved May 2, 2013.
^ "Scandal – Season 1". Metacritic. Retrieved May 2, 2012.
^ Gay, Verne (April 3, 2012). "Shonda Rhimes' 'Scandal' premieres on
ABC". Newsday. Retrieved May 2, 2013.
^ Clark, Cindy (January 18, 2013). "
Kerry Washington to receive NAACP
President's Award". USA Today. Retrieved January 24, 2013.
^ "'Scandal' Cast Adorably And Excitedly Accepts
TV Guide Magazine Fan
Favorite Awards (VIDEO)". Huffingtonpost. April 17, 2013. Retrieved
May 15, 2013.
^ Schneider, Michael (December 19, 2013). "
TV Guide Magazine Names
Kerry Washington TV Star of the Year". tvguide.com. Retrieved March
^ a b Obenson, Tambay A. (July 18, 2013). "
Kerry Washington Is 1st
Black Actress Since Cicely Tyson In 1995 To Earn Drama Lead Actress
Primetime Emmy Nomination". Indiewire. Retrieved July 19, 2013.
^ Freydkin, Donna (July 10, 2014). "
Kerry Washington is 'speechless'
for once". USA Today. Retrieved July 12, 2014.
^ "Nominations Announced for the 20th Annual Screen Actors Guild
Awards". sagawards.com. January 18, 2014. Retrieved March 12,
^ "2014 Golden Globes Awards". goldenglobes.com. Archived from the
original on April 3, 2014. Retrieved March 12, 2014.
^ Miller, Julie (March 21, 2013). "The Top 10 Best-Dressed TV
Characters". Vanity Fair. Retrieved May 2, 2013.
^ Naoreen, Nuzhat (April 4, 2013). "'Scandal'-ous Fashion Secrets!".
Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved May 2, 2013.
Kerry Washington Wants
Olivia Pope to Redefine Power Dressing".
elle.com. Retrieved November 23, 2014.
^ "The top 10 political TV shows". boston globe.com. Retrieved August
^ Obenson, Tambay A. "
Kerry Washington Will Reminisce About Past Loves
in Malcolm D. Lee's Wedding Romcom 'Is He the One?'". Retrieved
January 8, 2015.
^ Friedlander, Whitney. "Photo:
Kerry Washington as
Anita Hill in
HBO's 'Confirmation'". Retrieved August 16, 2015.
^ "Confirmation". Television Academy. Retrieved 2017-07-21.
^ "Kerry Washington: Dating Scared Me". People. July 7, 2007.
Retrieved July 3, 2013.
Kerry Washington Weds Nnamdi Asomugha". People. July 3, 2013.
Retrieved July 4, 2013.
Kerry Washington weds pro athlete Nnamdi Asomugha". CBS News. July
3, 2013. Retrieved July 8, 2013.
^ Lee, Caroline (2013). "
Nnamdi Asomugha secretly weds 'Scandal' star
Kerry Washington - UPI.com". upi.com. Retrieved July 8, 2013.
^ Blumm, K.C. "
Kerry Washington Welcomes Daughter Isabelle Amarachi".
People. Retrieved May 2, 2014.
^ Nessif, Bruna and Holly Passalaqua
Kerry Washington and Nnamdi
Asomugha Welcome Son Caleb, E! Online, 18 October 2016. Retrieved 18
^ We Love
Kerry Washington Archived July 7, 2007, at the Wayback
Machine. Crave Online.
^ Newcomb, Alyssa (May 19, 2013). "Kerry Washington: 'Scandal' Star
Shares Memories From Her College Years". ABC News. Retrieved May 20,
Kerry Washington at GWU commencement: Grads must be 'heroes of own
lives'". washingtonpost. May 19, 2013. Retrieved May 20, 2013.
^ "Reel Sistas Join the Fight Against Breast Cancer". September 5,
2007. Archived from the original on February 1, 2014. Retrieved
January 24, 2013.
Kerry Washington DNC Speech: Read The Democratic National
Convention Remarks". Huffington Post. September 6, 2012. Retrieved
January 15, 2013.
Kerry Washington On Gay Rumors: 'I've Never Been Bothered By The
Lesbian Rumor'". The Huffington Post. AOL. November 1, 2013. Retrieved
March 4, 2015.
^ Malkin, Marc (March 3, 2015). "
Kerry Washington to Be Honored By
GLAAD With Vanguard Award E! Online". E!. NBCUniversal Cable.
Retrieved March 4, 2015.
^ Kessler, Robert (March 23, 2015). "
Kerry Washington Brings the Crowd
to Its Feet With GLAAD Awards Speech Yahoo Celebrity - Yahoo
Yahoo! Celebrity. Yahoo!. Retrieved March 23, 2015.
^ "49 Celebrities Honor 49 Victims of Orlando Tragedy Human Rights
Campaign". Hrc.org. Retrieved 2016-06-30.
^ Rothaus, Steve (June 12, 2016). "Pulse Orlando shooting scene a
popular LGBT club where employees, patrons 'like family'". The Miami
Herald. Retrieved June 15, 2016.
^ "Kerry Washington: Los Angeles, CA". www.pcah.gov. Retrieved March
^ "Kerry Washington". vday.org. Archived from the original on February
2, 2014. Retrieved January 24, 2013.
^ "Kerry Washington, Viola Davis, Ellen Pompeo,
Shonda Rhimes star in
Hillary Clinton ad". USA Today. Retrieved 2016-08-01.
Wikiquote has quotations related to: Kerry Washington
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Kerry Washington at the
Internet Broadway Database
Internet Broadway Database
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