Monday, January 14, 2013

Bellamy Young - TV

Bellamy Young - TV

By Rych McCain International/Nationally Syndicated Entertainment Columnist

Bellamy Young

Spot Lighting D.C. Politics Scandal Style!
Photos ABC-TV

Bellamy Young
    Network Television has had her share of dramas with a Washington, D.C. political theme and backdrop but few have cut to the core like the  ABC-TV drama series “Scandal” starring Kerry Washington as PR crisis manager and attorney Olivia Pope whose job it is to protect the public images of the nation’s elite and making sure their secrets never get out. The show is in its second season with ratings that are shooting through the roof. Portraying the role of First Lady Mellie Grant is Yale graduate and Asheville, NC. Native Bellamy Young. Like most of her peers, Young has made the rounds of episodic TV, movies and Broadway. She brings a unique brand of fire to her role as the nation’s first lady in a political thriller drama that pulls no punches.

Bellamy as First Lady Mellie Grant
     When asked how her view of Washington politics has changed, if any, Young laughs, “Ooh, blinders off a little bit. I’m sure that with any part of our government like NASA etc., there are many, many layers that we don’t even pretend to know but I empathize more and I am more in awe because it is just difficult. It is all kinds of difficult because your heart is in it and the politics of it all is so complicated and so nuanced. It’s a hard business.” The strategy meetings in the show are so intense when they are dealing with each case situation that it is surreal to watch. What does Young look forward to in up coming episodes now that she knows the basic premise of what they do? She reacts, “You know what, I’m not smart like that. I don’t have a writers mind. And the sheer joy of getting that script handed to me and literally it has clutched the peril’s moment. I mean we text each other and e-mail each other – what page are you on? Oh my God look at page 45. Anything I could think of would be flat compared to what they will do just in the next episode.”

     The show is particularly intense because it is based off of the real life exploits of Judy Smith, an African American attorney with a legal and public relations background. Smith has served as an Assistant United States Attorney and Special Counsel to the US Attorney of The District of Columbia as well as being appointed as Special Assistant and Deputy Press Secretary to President George H.W. Bush. Her distinguished professional track record and experience in both the legal and PR field equipped her to hone her God given talent to “fix” sticky political situations. She started Smith & Company, a Strategic and Crisis Communications Firm and has handled major clients, corporations and foreign governments who had messy situations that 

needed cleaning up. In “Scandal,” Smith is portrayed as Olivia Pope played by sexy, sassy and classy Kerry Washington. The show was created by another African American super writer/producer Shonda Rhimes who also wrote and created “Gray’s Anatomy” and “Private Practice.” 

      The cast is superb with the best of writers. In regard to the dangers that the real life crisis team had to deal with, the cast is quick to make sure that their character is still alive with each new script. Young jokes, “The conversation in the make-up trailer is often like, well they can kill me, and someone else would say hey they could kill me. Then we all come up with intricate ways for then to kill us.

 Even Kerry, she said to Shonda the other day, ‘Columbus is really running the room in this episode, are you going to kill me off?’ Of course nothing is going to happen to Kerry but it is Shonda Rhimes and it could be a blood bath.” The new season airs on ABC-TV on Thursday nights 10PM/9PM CT.

  © 2013 Rych McCain Media/Syndication tm

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