Bellamy Young - When "Scandal" Picks Up Where Reality Leaves Off

January 25, 2017 - Heather Ann Thompson & Bellamy Young 01/25/2017 Views: 22,954

"Scandal" star Bellamy Young weighs in on why her politically motivated character is compared to Hillary Clinton and chats about what it's like to work for Shonda Rhimes. (5:29)

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Please welcome Bellamy Young!

-♪ -(cheering and applause)

-Hi.-Welcome to the show.

Did you get me some hooch?

-Just water, unfortunately.-Ugh!

-Okay, all right. -(stammers)This is so... I...

Honestly,this is so strange for me.

I'm-I'm such a big fanof Scandal

that I only know youas Mellie Grant.

I know you as being a connivingand yet very hurt individual

who is plotting the demiseof everyone

that stands in her path.Do you get that in the street?

-Just a girl.-Do some people hate you because

-of who you play?-You know, people...

What I get is they come upand they're like,

"I love to hate you."Yeah, like... (stammers)

A real joy in it, you know?

I know some of my othercastmates have gotten--

-particularly the guys--they've gotten some... -Yeah.

stranger encounters, you know?But the-the women on the set...

-I know what you mean by"stranger." -You know, like...

-Yeah, you know. You know.-I know what you mean.

-I know what you mean.-But I've only gotten, like,

joy and goodness. And we loveour job so much, Trevor.

I mean, we really, really do.

And, you know what,I don't blame you.

Scandal is-is a showthat just has blown up.

Shonda Rhimeshas done an amazing job.

As actors,you've done an amazing job.

Do you ever think though,like, looking at Scandal...

You know, for thosewho don't know, the one person

who doesn't know, the showis about Washington, D.C.,

-but it is scandalous.It is extreme. -It is.

-It's hyperbole. -Althoughit seemed like hyperbole

before Donald Trump...

(cheering and applause)

Do you ever think to yourselfthat, like, now

you guys are a like,a documentary by comparison?

-(laughter)-You know what's funny is, um...

Yes, we...

I mean, Shonda's gone on recordwith this season in particular,

-we're supposed to arc out..-Yeah.

You knowwe started this season...

This is our sixth season.We feel so lucky, and, uh...

But we shot the firstfive episodes in the summer.

My years are circularin my mind.

This is the summer,and this is the winter.

-I noticed that.That's where you... -Okay.

So, we shot the first fivein the summer,

and, uh,way before the election.

And they had an idea of howseason six was gonna arc out.

And they were like...(gasps)

"At the very end, someone willstart speaking Russian,

and the Russians will havehacked the election."

And then the Russians hackedthe election, so...

-(laughter)-Do you know?

That's what I'm saying.

Now it seems likeyou're stealing from real life.

-Yeah. -People are like,"This is so boring."

-It's surreal.-(laughter)

Everything in the show is likepeople secretly controlling...

They're like, "That Scandal shows us the news."

That's it. It is news now.

No, believe me,we're gonna... we're gonna...

-We'll still bring it.-You're gonna outdo it?

I don't think the...

-That's too high a bar,Trevor Noah. -(laughter)

Um, uh...

I know we'll be scintillatingin our own way.

-You know... you know what...-More sex. Can I say that?

-More sex?-Than D.C.

You don't know?Than the Trump presidency?

He's got a few executive ordersto sign. You never know.

-God. -(laughter)-One of them could be...

-(as Trump): "More sex."-(laughter)

And you'll read it like,"More... sex."

-"More sex."-"Okay, more sex."

-(laughter)-The, um...

What I did find particularlyintriguing in the story is,

you know, the rolethat your character plays--

she is, in many ways...

Like, she reminded me,in some ways,

of Hillary's story.

You have this woman who--her husband is president,

and then, you know, he has atumultuous time with the press,

and he has all of these illicitstories following him around.

-And then, she becomesthis force in politics. -Mm.

She rises up, and she goes, "I'mgoing to run for president."

And like, that story,you know, in parallel

with what Hillary was doing waspretty inspirational.

Was that somethingthat connected with you

on a personal level?

Well, you know, here's...

here's what...how that makes me feel.

And I have this feelingfrequently.

Um, there are... there were,

especially in the beginningof Scandal

-a rather Clintonesque,you know, paradigm. -Yeah.

Right? Um...

But I think we've only gotten

to watch Hillary Clintonrun for president,

and almost be president.

And then we've gotten to watchMellie Grant run for president

and almost be president, andbecause they're the only women

we've gotten to watch do that,we conflate them.

And you know, the more women

-we get to see go through thatexperience... -That is insane.

-I never thought of that.-...then we won't just think,

"Well, that's all women.That woman

is all women." You know,we'll just see them as people.

It is my greatest honorto be a soldier

in Shonda's army because her...It's not even her goal.

She just writes lifeas she sees it,

so everybody has a seatat the table,

everybody's story gets told.

Everybody gets to see themselvesrepresented on screen.

And it happens... when ithappens on TV, right...

-(applause) -...it comesinto your home. -Yes. Yes.

Like, you go into everybody'shome tonight, and they're like,

"I love that Trevor Noah,"and so, you know...

-You clearly haven't beenon Twitter. -(laughter)

But our stories gointo people's homes.

-Yeah, that's true. -Andit normalizes the experiences

that, you know,maybe marginalized,

or may not have happened yet,and that's the power of story.

It's really beautiful.

Shonda does a great job.You guys do an amazing job.

I am your fan, we are fans.

-Thank you so much for beingon the show. -Listen.

You know what? I haveto ask you. You guys back me up.

My neighbor Allisonwanted me to say,

"Will you ask Trevor Noahto run for president?"

-And I said, "All right."-(cheers and applause)

Oh, wow. Oh. Wow. Thank you.

-Yes.-Yeah.

I mean, wait, wait, wait.

As long as you don't askto see my birth certificate.

-That's all. I was bornin Africa. -(laughter)

-Thank you so much for beinghere. -Thanks, Trevor.

-Thank you. -Thank you so muchfor being on the show.

I really appreciate it.The season six premiere

of Scandal airs Thursday,January 26 at 9:00 p.m. on ABC.

Bellamy Young, everybody.

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