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SR International: Shonda Rhimes Talks ‘Inventing Anna,’ Her Company Of Traveling Players, And More

SR International: Shonda Rhimes Talks ‘Inventing Anna,’ Her Company Of Traveling Players, And More


In 2018, when it was first reported that TV executive Shonda Rhimes, who reportedly has a net worth of $140 Million according to Celebrity Net Worth, was going to adapt the story of accused scammer Anna Sorokin, better known as Anna Delvey, actor Katie Lowes says she immediately started researching. Shonda Rhimes Inventing Anna

Lowes, who had a breakout role in Rhimes’s Washington, D.C., drama Scandal as upstart fixer Quinn Perkins, knew Delvey’s story would have roles for many twenty-to-thirty-something women—but she also knew something else: Rhimes’s propensity for working with actors she’s worked with before. Shonda Rhimes net worth

She eventually got the part of Rachel DeLoache Williams, one of Delvey’s former friends and victims, in Netflix’s new series Inventing Anna, out this month.

PHOTO: Julia Garner and Katie Lowes on set | NICOLE RIVELLI/NETFLIX courtesy of WSJ. Magazine

The role marks Lowes’s fourth time acting in one of Rhimes’s shows, including small appearances on ABC’s medical dramas Grey’s Anatomy and Private Practice.

She’s just one in an unofficial ensemble of actors to pop up across the universe of Shondaland, Rhimes’s production company. In Inventing Anna, Lowes is joined by Shondaland regulars, including Kate Burton, Jeff Perry and Joshua Malina, along with Ozark’s Julia Garner as Delvey and Veep’s Anna Chlumsky as the journalist trying to unravel Delvey’s story.

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Rhimes, whose production deal with Netflix makes her one of the highest-paid women in television, has built an empire by telling female-focused stories starring a loyal troupe of theater-trained character actors.  Shonda Rhimes Inventing Anna

Here are some things Shonda Rhimes and Company revealed to WSJ. Magazine…

Shonda Rhimes on her MVP cast members that she worked with on Inventing Anna:

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“They are just people who are wildly talented, who I love to work with, who deliver every single time without question and who are chameleons,” says Rhimes of her go-to actors, whom she calls her traveling players.

Casting director Linda Lowy (who has cast all of Shondaland’s projects, including Bridgerton) on how living in Chicago, as Rhimes did, connected the two artistically:

“There’s something that happens when you go to see theater in that city. There’s no stars—it’s just great ensemble acting,” she says. Shonda Rhimes net worth

Lowy on vetting the actors they cast:

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In their vetting, Rhimes and Lowy do a deep dive into the background of the actors they cast—or, as some might view it, bring into the Shonda family. “In series television, when there’s options on actors for six or seven years,” says Lowy, “you’re living with these people.”

Kate Burton (Ellis Gray/Grey’s Anatomy, Sally Langston/Scandal, Nora Radford/Inventing Anna) on being in a Rhimes ensemble:

At the first table read for Inventing Anna, Rhimes told the assembled cast that Burton was her good luck charm. “We all come from the theater, and the reality is that you do have to have a sense of training and stamina from having been in play after play after play, night after night, eight shows a week.”  Shonda Rhimes Inventing Anna

Jeff Perry (Cyrus Beene/Scandal, Lou/Inventing Anna) on working on a Rhimes show:

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In 1974, Perry, who calls himself an “ensemble communist,” co-founded Steppenwolf Theatre Company in Chicago, which counts John Malkovich and Laurie Metcalf (Perry’s first wife) among its original members. In both roles, Perry worked with Rhimes’s fast-paced dialogue. “Speed is your real friend,” he says. In Inventing Anna, he appears with Terry Kinney, his friend of 50 years and a Steppenwolf co-founder, on camera for the first time. Shonda Rhimes net worth

Joshua Malina (David Rosen/Scandal, tech entrepreneur/Inventing Anna) on the positives of being a Shondaland player:

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Pointing out that by working with repeat performers Rhimes is able to maintain a “no a—holes policy.” (He jokes that he’s probably closest to the border of what she’ll allow.) Shonda Rhimes Inventing Anna

Read the full article here.

Photo: shondarhimes | Instagram

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