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Amid the wave of virtual Hollywood events raising funds and voting awareness in the final days before Nov. 3, Grey’s Anatomy star Kelly McCreary has taken her own unique approach to election advocacy. McCreary, who plays Dr. Maggie Pierce on the hit ABC drama series, leads scripted podcast event Wednesday Morning — a one-time, 50-minute show that follows a diverse group of people the day after an election.
The podcast — which was released Oct. 21 and was written and directed by McCreary’s husband and TV director Pete Chatmon, with co-writer Candice Sanchez McFarlane — was originally intended to be a short film, but due to COVID-19 limitations was pivoted to an audio-only special.
“I think the intensity of a single-sense experience really helps to underline how close all of these people are to us, whether we are them, in some way, or we know people close to them or we’ve been impacted in some way close to them,” says McCreary. The show features McCreary as Jeannine Hamilton, who loses a local election on Nov. 3 and on Nov. 4 finds herself at brunch with her father and his duplicitous colleagues as they engage in a dangerous game of political horsetrading.
Though the podcast doesn’t reference any real-life political figures or races, “it’s about a place that has the opportunity to make a turn away from autocratic authoritarianism and didn’t, and what that means when the election is over,” McCreary says. “Of course, it’s called Wednesday Morning because, theoretically, our election is normally over on Wednesday morning; this year, that’s not the case.”
Chatmon and McFarlane wrote the story in March after Grey’s Anatomy and All Rise, for which Chatmon was shooting the season finale, were shut down due to the start of the coronavirus pandemic. The satirical tale takes a look at how politics became what they are in 2020 America, with each character representing a different political perspective. Colman Domingo (Fear The Walking Dead), Spencer Garrett (The Frontrunner), Blake DeLong (When They See Us), Joy Nash (Twin Peaks), Louis Ozawa (Hunters), Elena Campbell-Martinez (Vida), Remy Ortiz (Instant Family) and Monnie Aleahmad (Bosch) also star.
“Given that these are complicated, complex times that we’re living in, I hope that this story is cathartic for people who feel a lot of ways about this like I do, like I know many people do who are confused and feel very vulnerable because their actual lives are at stake in some cases,” says McCreary. “I hope that it can be cathartic, I hope that it can be inspirational, I hope that it is a cautionary tale for people who are not taking this time as seriously. I think we keep hearing over and over and over again that this is the most important election of our lifetimes and I happen to believe that that’s true.”
“I don’t think it stops with the election, these are the most important times of our times,” she adds. “To move forward from this we have to stay in the fight.”
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