Kerry Washington celebrated her dual roles as star and co-executive producer of Confirmation in style at the HBO film's premiere on Thursday, dazzling on the green carpet at the Paramount Theatre in Hollywood, Calif., in a floral Dolce & Gabbana dress.
The Scandal star, who was beaming as she arrived, told InStyle why she decided to take on the project, which focuses on the controversial 1991 Clarence Thomas Supreme Court nomination hearings.
“The film is a lot about courage… and a lot about power and being up against forces that feel more powerful than you do,” she said. “That was one of the things that really drew me to the project as a whole because I feel like on Scandal I play somebody who’s always the most powerful person in the room and I thought ‘What about playing somebody who’s on the other side of the spectrum when it comes to D.C. politics.’”
In the film, Washington plays law professor Anita Hill, who alleged that Thomas sexually harassed her when she worked for him at the Department of Education and Equal Employment Opportunities Commission. The allegations came as Thomas’s nomination moved to the floor of the Senate, and ended up causing a media and political firestorm.
Hill was on hand in the audience to show her support, as were the actress’s friends, family, and even Scandal co-stars, who couldn’t stop singing her praises.
“What always inspires me about Kerry is that everything comes straight from her heart,” Bellamy Young (below, right), who rocked a Josie Natori dress, Schutz shoes, and an Edie Parker clutch, told us as she caught up with Scandal co-star Katie Lowes (below, left). “So, when she’s drawn to a project, she’s drawn to it from her marrow, and she follows through with such expertise and aplomb, but also like deep deep grace, because it was really a mission for her.”
Gabrielle Union echoed those sentiments, telling InStyle, “I’m just so incredibly proud. I’m a fan of her work, but, her as an executive producer is such a boss move, and talking to people who were a part of the production, they not only enjoyed the work… but, what they enjoyed was the experience that she provided, that she was so present, so knowledgeable, so prepared.”
Eric Stonestreet, who played Ken Duberstein in the film, agreed, saying, “She is as fantastic and lovely, and sweet and kind as she is beautiful… It was fun working on a project that she was producing.”
Following the screening of the film, where Hill received a standing ovation, it was time for the after-party, where guests noshed on a buffet topped with Chilean sea bass, truffle macaroni and cheese, mashed potatoes, tri-tip, and more.
Washington made the most of the fête and was all smiles as she danced with her mom, stopped to pose for photos with Hill, and even snapped a couple of selfies as she enjoyed the night’s festivities.
HBO’s Confirmation debuts on April 16 at 8 p.m. ET.