Praise the Lord, #TGIT is back! To prepare, we spoke with Scandal's Tony Goldwyn, A.K.A. President Fitzgerald Grant, about what it's like portraying the President of the United States of America, where Fitz is at emotionally after the loss of his son, and of course, we discussed Olivia Pope.
We’re curious, do people have a hard time differentiating you as an actor because you play such an huge figure on TV as President Grant? Have fans ever called you the President?
I’m not sure if it has to do with being the President. I guess I do get a certain type of respect that I wouldn’t get if it was just me. People seem to get a real kick out of that. People tend to call me “The President” a lot.
What do you have to do to get into the mentality of such as powerful character?
Now it’s pretty natural because I’ve been doing it for a while. But in the first and second season, the thing I had to remind myself all the time, the degree of pressure the president is always under, every single second of every single day, there is so much stress, and so much weighing on every single moment. You have to have a sort of grace under that pressure. That kind of informs everything and to find grace under that pressure and a way of being cool in the face of that. The stakes were always really high and once I internalized that, it was extremely helpful.
Where would you say Fitz is at emotionally/mentally over the loss of his oldest son Jerry?
Oh god, the loss of his son Jerry almost killed him. Then there was the loss of Olivia that happened at the end of last season. But then Olivia returned and even though they’re not together, she’s back in his life in a way. But there’s hope, as he discovered. But the death of Jerry focused Fitz in a way that he’s determined. When he then lost Olivia, he was lost and utterly destroyed inside, but he was determined to be as effective a president as he can be. Now Olivia’s back and, as of the last episode in the mid-season finale, which I directed, Olivia’s been kidnapped. Fitz is being blackmailed now, that if he doesn’t go into this war in West Angola, that she will be killed and he’ll never see her again. Now Fitz has a terrible problem, because that completely undermines everything he intended to do in the wake of his son’s death to honor that memory and his job. But also the loss of Olivia is something that he can’t tolerate because he’s so desperately in love with her and so dependent on her.
How far do you think he would go to save Olivia?
I don’t know. We’ll have to see where everything goes, I can’t give any spoilers. But it’s sort of an existential crisis for Fitz. He has a responsibility to his job, the country, and everything he sees himself being about. But at the same time Olivia means more to him than anything in the world. It’s just an impossible quantity of situations.
Can you explain what it’s like to portray that relationship? What Olivia and Fitz have is nothing like anything else on TV.
You know what it is, these two people connect on a very, very deep level – emotionally, sexually, intellectually – everything. And at the same time, it’s an impossible relationship. The circumstances of their lives make it impossible. They keep making it more impossible. But it’s one of those relationships, that no matter what happens, once they’re in proximity of each other, all bets are off. They can’t deny the connection that they have. They can be enraged with each other, whatever their opinions are of what they should think; it just evaporates when they’re in each other’s presence. It’s an undeniable baseline reality of who they are to each other. It’s a very extreme kind of thing that happens.
Do you think there is something very specific about that relationship that has so many fans rooting for them, despite the fact that Fitz is married?
Well look, Fitz and Olivia it’s not just any infidelity. The truth is, yes they had an affair but you know Fitz has been in a very dysfunctional marriage and has stood up forthrightly and asked his wife for a divorce. He told Olivia he was leaving his wife. He said to Olivia 2 years ago, “I’m done, I’m choosing you.” He’s not some man who just wont leave his wife. He’s tried everything to be with the woman he loves, and Olivia, in collusion with Mellie, has blocked it. She’s forced him to wait. I know people have an issue with the infidelity but it’s not like his wife doesn’t know and he hasn’t been honest about it. And for that, I have no moral judgment about that as far as Fitz, he’s not trying to have his cake and eat it too. He’s transgressed and sinned, but so has Mellie and so has Olivia, they’re all human.
What’s different about Olivia’s relationship with Jake versus Fitz?
I think that Jake and Olivia’s relationship is one thing, but Fitz and Olivia, I believe separate from these insane circumstances of him being the President and all the pressures that come to bear and all of Olivia’s fears about intimacy and giving herself over to someone. I think Fitz believes and I believe, in his advocacy, that if she would do what he said, they would be able to begin something substantial and powerful. They could have a family together. Hell, they’re not going to move to Vermont and he’s not going to be the mayor, that’s a fantasy but they could, as a couple, build a life together and it would be so much more powerful than they are separate. They could have a very ideal relationship, I believe. I think her relationship with Jake is something different. It’s an escape for all that. Maybe they would have a successful relationship. I do believe Olivia loves both men. But I also think that she and Fitz have a very deep connection on so many levels, professionally, and in so many ways. I think there is more heft to it.. Then there is their chemistry, while she and Jake have good chemistry, Fitz and Olivia have a chemistry that is so beyond a sexual connection, it’s that plus so much else.
Do you think that’s what fans really see? When Fitz and Olivia are in a room together, it’s very obvious their feelings and emotions for each other.
It’s super charged. They see each other and know each other in a deep, almost historic way. That was Fitz’s big point in the past, “you know me,” they connect and see the best of each other. They see the true person. I think Jake and Olivia, in a relationship, would be creating a whole new thing. They’d be leaving their life and running away and it would be a whole big thing. Maybe they can start all over and Jake can leave behind his life and start with Olivia. I think with Fitz and Olivia, they could work, if they make their way through his gauntlet. They’ve always known where they’ve been. We don’t know Jake’s past. He’s a mystery figure. He’s been a soldier his whole life. And then a B613 operative.
Switching to Fitz’s other relationship, can you tell us if you think things between Fitz and Mellie will ever recover, not the marriage but just as Fitz and Mellie, after all that’s happened, Jerry’s death on top of it all?
I think it goes back and forth with Mellie. I don’t see Mellie and Fitz recovering their romantic relationship, ever. But at the same time, as much as Fitz was disgusted and offended and to his core just cut Mellie off, when she sort of betrayed him, he still understands Mellie. He knows that’s not who Mellie really is. That’s not who the true Mellie is. That’s the desperate, damaged, wounded Mellie. He’s got the love-hate relationship with Mellie. He has real contempt for what Mellie stands for, but he has intense guilt over his neglect of Mellie. His father raped his wife and he’s got all this guilt. He’s got this complicated thing. But at the same time he respects and loves and admires Mellie for all of her best qualities and he’s also not willing to give up on that. Like so many marriages, it keeps flipping from one to the other, but they have a partnership there. They have a mutual kind of respect in some way. They both know each other’s attributes as each other’s failings.
You directed that crazy mid-season finale. Can we look forward to you directing any more episodes in this season?
No sadly, I don’t have any more for this season.
What was it like directing yourself and then your co-workers, given you’ve been working with them so much and you’re so invested in this storyline?
It’s such an experience to work from inside of it. It’s also a great privilege to be able to work with all these great actors in a different way than when I am acting with them. It’s exciting for all of us. I get to work with people I don’t usually have scenes with, like Guillermo (Huck) and Katie (Quinn), who I don’t ever act with much on screen if at all. It’s wonderful. It’s a great experience.
So, can you give us an unbiased response on whether you’re Team Jake or Team Fitz?
I endorse God fully, but I have to admit that I’m Team Fitz. I say that with full appreciation of the Jake-Olivia relationship. But I think for me, that’s a fantasy relationship, at least now, its not grounded in anything real, it’s an erotically charged escape relationship for both of those people. I think Fitz and Olivia is a relationship based on two people who could be the answer for each other, they may never find their way there, but it’s very real and the facts are established in reality.
Scandal returns to ABC Thursday, January 29th at 9 P.M.
Unless you're a die-hard TV fan, like us here at Hollywood.com, you may have just found out about Jane the Virgin after watching Gina Rodriguez win the Golden Globe for Best Actress in a Comedy Series. Did her sweet acceptance speech make you wonder what her show was all about? Well, we're here to tell you it's worth the hype.
Jane the Virgin is a self-proclaimed telenovela that non-Spanish speakers can understand and love. We won't ruin the plot for you, but there are countless dramas in both love and life that are portrayed with all the embellishment and even the sexy narrator voice that we could once only dream of. It doesn't take anything too seriously, but still has us hooked on the characters (there's even a telenovela actor in the mix).
1. Let's start with the obvious, the very attractive people in this show:
2. The sweet, innocent good girl that is Jane reminds us of the teacher's pet we once were:
3. The complicated love triangle:
4. The speed at which Jane falls in love with a baby she never planned to have:
5. Rojelio's obsession with himself is more funny than annoying:
6. The narrator's voice and ability to say exactly what we were thinking, Exhibit A:
7. Exhibit B:
8. The way the show highlights the importance of family:
9. There are mean high school girls that you actually grow to love:
10. Louisa's general craziness:
11. Rojelio's persistence with Xiomara:
12. Alba's ability to ruin so many sexual encounters:
13. Well, a mixture of Alba and God...
14. The undeniable chemistry between Rafael and Jane:
15. There's a character you can pin all your hatred and anger on - Petra:
16. The fact that behind all this aforementioned drama there is also a search for a drug lord going on...
Scandal is returning and I don't know about you, but all I can think about is that mean Papa Pope (Joe Morton)! The show left off with him breaking into Olivia's (Kerry Washington) home with a gun only for her to take his gun to turn it on him and pull the trigger...sadly it wasn't loaded. The big cliff hanger is that Olivia gets kidnapped, and if I had to guess her father is probably behind it. Why would I guess that you may ask? Well Rowan Pope is the scariest villain on TV and it just fits his MO. If you don't believe me here are 7 reasons why he has every other villain beat.
1. He's unpredictable.
2. He wields a lot of power and he knows it.
3. Even if you are very smart and successful he knows what to say to make your feel stupid and incompetent.
4. He would lock you away and throw away the key, only to make your relatives think you are dead. He's done this several times!
5. When he did this to Huck, it drove him crazy and made him forget his family.
6. He will kill anyone in his daughter's life if it helps him get what he wants.
7. He strikes fear into everyone, especially his daughter.
Only time will tell if "kidnapping his own daughter" should be added to the list. Do you think Rowan is the scariest villain? Tweet us your answers using the Twitter handles below!
A judge in New York City has reversed a ruling banning Marvin Gaye's heirs from playing the late star's music in court as part of a copyright battle over Robin Thicke's hit Blurred Lines.
Thicke and his collaborator Pharrell Williams are currently locked in a legal battle with Gaye's children over claims their 2013 chart smash Blurred Lines features elements of the soul singer's 1977 tune Got to Give It Up. The case is set to go to trial in February (15), and a judge recently dealt Gaye's heirs a blow by ruling they cannot play the star's original song in court because they do not own the performance or recording rights. The decision meant they would have been forced to book a musician to play only certain elements of the track in court, but the ruling has now been reversed.
U.S. District Judge John Kronstadt has overturned his previous decision in court papers filed on Wednesday (28Jan15). In the documents, he states, "This (new) order represents a change from this earlier view based on the court's further consideration of the proof required... To avoid prejudice to (Thicke and Williams), these recordings would need to be edited to remove all unprotected elements such as percussion and backup vocals... Any potential prejudice to (Thicke and Williams) caused the by the airing of Gaye's voice, which is not protected, is something that could perhaps be addressed by a limiting instruction."
Lindsay Lohan is facing a possible jail term for counting meet-and-greets with fans as part of her community service work.
The Mean Girls actress raced to finish her 240-hour volunteering before a court deadline on Wednesday (26Jan15) but officials have called into question the legitimacy of work she carried out in London. It is alleged she volunteered 80 hours in just nine days, counted 18 hours of meet-and-greets with fans outside her London play as part her requirement, and also included 70 hours of being "shadowed" by young people on internships.
Prosecutor Terry White was given extra time to verify the work she carried out with London organization Community Service Volunteers (CSV), and he wants a judge to punish the actress for copping out of her community service requirements, according to TMZ.com. White has accused Lohan of manipulating the system to reach her target hours and wants her sent to jail for not completing her community order legitimately.
Lohan's lawyer Shawn Holley told a Los Angeles judge that CSV bosses had approved the volunteering tasks Lohan undertook in London. A decision will be taken once White has investigated further with CSV bosses.
Hit TV show Downton Abbey is to end later this year (15) after six series, according to a new report.
The period drama, which was first broadcast in 2010, will reportedly draw to a close so creator/writer Julian Fellowes can work on a new project, and the stars of the show, including Michelle Dockery and Hugh Bonneville, have been seen holding meetings for future work. A source tells Britain's Daily Mirror newspaper, "It's an open secret that Downton is ending this year. Some of the actors are keen to let it be known they will be available for work after the summer. Some are interested in the U.S., where Downton is as popular as it is in the U.K. "Joanne Froggatt, Edith (Laura) Carmichael and Allen Leech were in Los Angeles for the awards last week and there were several meetings about both TV and film roles."
Bosses of a British disability charity are urging Kanye West to avoid the word 'spaz' in future raps after he sparked outrage by using the offensive term in his track with Rihanna and Sir Paul McCartney.
The Stronger hitmaker raps the line, "Then I heard you was talkin' trash/ Hold me back I'm 'bout to spaz" during his verse in Rihanna's latest single Four Five Seconds, which also features McCartney.
The lyric has angered critics, and Richard Hawkes, the chief executive of U.K. charity Scope, wants the rapper to watch his words in future. Hawkes tells British newspaper The Sun, "Many disabled people find the word 'spaz' very offensive... Kanye West is a huge star, listened to by millions of young people who might be influenced by his songs.
"It would be such a shame if the world became commonplace again. We've contacted Kanye and asked him not to use this word in future recordings."
Justin Bieber has issued a public apology for his "arrogant" and "conceited" behavior over the past few years.
The Baby hitmaker has become more famous for his wild antics than his pop music in recent times, due to frequent run-ins with the police, reports of nightclub brawls, and a conviction on a vandalism charge.
He is now attempting to mount a music comeback, and he has filmed a candid video message for fans apologizing for his behavior and insisting he was merely "pretending" to be a bad boy.
In the video, which was posted online, Bieber also says sorry for appearing awkward and nervous during a new interview with Ellen DeGeneres, which is due to air in the U.S. this week (beg26Jan15), and insists he was just trying to make a good impression.
He says, "Today I was on Ellen... But I was really nervous... I didn't want to come off arrogant or conceited or basically how I've been acting the past year, year and a half.
"I'm not who I was pretending to be. Why I say 'pretending' is often we pretend to be something we're not as a cover up of what we're truly feeling inside. And there were a lot of feelings going on in there. Just being young and growing up in this business is hard. Growing up in general is hard... I felt like people were judging me, and I really want people to know how much I care, how much I care about people, and how I'm not that person to say, 'I don't give a f**k,' you know? I'm not that kid. I'm a person who genuinely cares. And although what's happened in the past has happened. I just want to make the best impression on people and be kind and loving and gentle and soft. And although people can call me a 'softie,' that's how my mom raised me."
Bieber's appearance on The Ellen DeGeneres Show airs in the U.S. on Thursday (29Jan15).
Kurt Cobain's widow Courtney Love has confessed she used heroin while pregnant with their daughter, Frances Bean Cobain.
In 1992, Vanity Fair writer Lynn Hirschberg claimed the Hole rocker used the drug while she was pregnant, and representatives for Love and Cobain vehemently denied the accusation. A statement read: "We unequivocally deny this... As soon as Courtney found out she was pregnant, she immediately contacted an obstetrician and a doctor specializing in chemical dependency and has been under their care since then and has been assured that she can expect to have a healthy baby."
In wake of the controversy, the stars temporarily lost custody of their daughter, and Love released an unofficial album called 'Bring Me the Head of Lynn Hirschberg", and she even blamed the writer for Cobain's suicide in 1994.
However nearly 23 years later, Love has now come clean about the accusation, admitting Hirschberg's claims were valid, in new documentary, Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck. In the film, which debuted at the Sundance Film Festival in Utah on Saturday (24Jan15), Love says, "I used it once then stopped. I knew she would be fine."
Director Brett Morgen recently told Vanity Fair that he was adamant about keeping the admission in the film, since he also believes Hirschberg may have contributed to Cobain's downfall. He said, "Yeah, they were junkies but they weren't hurting anyone and the article really had a huge effect on Kurt’s psyche. I don’t think he ever recovered from it, because they took his child away."
Kurt Cobain: Montage of Heck, which was executive produced by 22-year-old Frances Bean Cobain, will have its TV premiere on U.S. network HBO on 4 May (15).