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Nov 14, 2014 Ali 0
November 14, 2014  •  Ali  •  Leave a Comment

Tom Verica who portrays Sam Keating on How To Get Away With Murder (along with as a producer and director on Scandal) spoke with Vulture about playing opposite of Viola and how that is what drew him to going in front of the camera for this part.

Your main job was, and is, serving as a director/producer on Scandal. How did you end up back in front of the camera?
Last spring, as they were prepping the pilot for How to Get Away With Murder, I was prepping the finale for Scandal. The casting director called me up to feel me out and let me know what [the part] was. I hadn’t read the script, but I said, “Look, if it’s to play Viola Davis’s husband, I’d be very attracted to that.” But I didn’t know if I’d be able to do it because of [the Scandal finale]. The next thing I know, a couple hours later, Shonda comes into my office and says, “I want you to play this part. I have you in mind for it, and if we can make it work, I’d like you do it.” And when your boss asks you to do something, you kind of have to do it. It was a scheduling nightmare, but to get to flex my acting muscles opposite Ms. Davis? I didn’t see many downsides to it.

You mentioned before that the chance to work with Viola Davis was a key reason to take the role on Murder. What’s it been like so far?
It was a bit intimidating initially. She’s such a powerhouse. She has so much strength in her performance. It’s kind of like a tennis partner — you want to stay up with her, and as she’s giving it to you, you want to hit it back. As soon as you get into a scene, you strip away that outside knowledge and experience of who an actor is and what they’ve done before … you have to be present in that moment. Who she is and what’s she’s done has to go out the window. You have to commit to this relationship and who she is with me in that moment. But I’m so impressed and blown away with how dialed in she is to the character. She just elevates everything. I don’t think there’s any other character like hers on television.

To read the entire interview go here.




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