Can New 'Scandal' Star Lisa Kudrow Talk Fast Enough for Shonda Rhimes?
When "Scandal" actor Dan Bucatinsky tried to lobby for his friend, Lisa Kudrow, to appear on the hit ABC drama, she demurred.
"I asked her, 'Lisa, would you ever do it?' She said, 'I can't talk that fast,''' Bucatinsky revealed during the "Scandal" panel earlier this summer at the ATX TV Festival.
Apparently the "Friends" star learned how, because The Hollywood Reporter reports that the Emmy-winning actress is joining the cast of "Scandal" in a recurring role as a politician. An ABC rep confirmed the news to Yahoo TV.
Kudrow is no stranger to the buzzworthy show thanks to Bucatinsky, who plays journalist James Novak. Bucatinsky, who is currently nominated for an Emmy for outstanding guest star, is good friends and producing partners with Kudrow. He served as an executive producer on her short-lived series "The Comeback," and they also partnered up for "Web Therapy," which started online before airing on Showtime. Bucatinsky also shared that Kudrow has watched every episode of the political drama.
Details of Kudrow's character are top-secret, but we can engage in some speculation based on what "Scandal" creator Rhimes has revealed about Season 3. It's very possible that Kudrow will play a Democratic candidate for president and eventually battle Fitzgerald Grant (Tony Goldwyn) in the election.
As Rhimes told TV Guide, "The election is coming eventually. In Season 3A, the Democrats will be having their primary election at some point, so in Season 3B, we will face the election at some point."
Another scenario involves Kudrow's politician embroiled in a far-reaching scandal that Olivia Pope (Kerry Washington) and her gladiator associates must fix. Each season of "Scandal" so far has seen long story arcs — who is Quinn Perkins, Defiance, the Mystery Park Bench Man (who turned out to be Olivia's father).
In either case, James will no doubt embark on some intrepid investigating, so BFFs Kudrow and Bucatinsky can reunite onscreen.
If other cast members have their way, their friends will stop by "Scandal," too. Josh Malina, who plays David Rosen, said, "I have pitched Allison Janney — not that she needs pitching — but Allison Janney is a big fan of the show and a spectacular actor and can do anything, so I've passed that on to Shonda and Betsy [Beers, the executive producer], and I'm hoping someday I'll open a script and the cast list will have Allison's name."
But first, Janney and others will have to find that fast-talking class! As co-executive producer Tom Verica said at ATX, the "Scandal" team has to make sure that any guest actors can speak fast and keep up. An average "Scandal" script is 70-80 pages (a normal script is about 53 pages), and the producers have only nine days to film each episode.
"Scandal" Season 3 premieres Thursday, 10/3 at 10 PM on ABC.
Watch a scene from "Scandal" filled with fast dialogue: