×
Back to IndieWire

Kerry Washington Helped Two SAG Members Get Health Insurance While Guest Hosting ‘Jimmy Kimmel Live!’

The Emmy winner recalled the "sweet" moment she qualified for SAG health insurance and paid it forward with two working actors on the July 20 episode of "Jimmy Kimmel Live!."

Kerry Washington

Kerry Washington

AP

Forget the MCU, Kerry Washington is a real-life superhero.

The Emmy-winning actress, director, producer, and activist used her guest hosting gig on the July 20 episode of “Jimmy Kimmel Live!” to help two fellow Screen Actors Guild members qualify for health insurance.

“Acting is one of those jobs that seems very, very glamorous. Sometimes it is. But in reality it can also be very tough,” Washington said. “When I first started out, I had to supplement my income by being a substitute teacher, a yoga instructor, a hostess at a restaurant. So it meant a lot to me the first time that I qualified for that sweet Screen Actors Guild health insurance. Yes, really. Now I’m a proud member of the Screen Actors Guild, or SAG as we say in the biz, but in order to get SAG healthcare, you have to make a certain amount of money each year, which is not always easy to do.”

She added, “So, we invited a few fellow real actors to the show tonight who are very close to qualifying for coverage. And they will get there if they deliver just one more line of dialogue on TV.”

Washington introduced the two actors who landed walk-on parts for the live late night talk show. One was just $40.87 away from getting insurance, with the other, dressed as a mailman, $400.87 away from qualifying. Washington threw confetti after both actors reached their health insurance goal.

The July 21 episode marked Washington’s return to subbing in for Kimmel for the first time since 2020. The “Little Fires Everywhere” star has three acting projects in the works, ranging from TV series “Unprisoned” which she also executive produces to film “Shadow Force” opposite Sterling K. Brown and Omar Sy. Washington also leads Eva Longoria’s feature directorial debut “24-7,” which she will produce in addition to “Shadow Force.” Washington additionally steps behind the camera as the director for upcoming series “Reasonable Doubt.”

“Art curates compassion. Art to me breaks down walls and allows us to step into somebody else’s shoes,” the multi-hyphenate talent and “Scandal” alum told Glamour in 2017. “If society is telling us to look the other way, and you, as anybody from a disenfranchised community, are saying, ‘My story matters,’ that is an act of activism.”

Sign Up: Stay on top of the latest breaking film and TV news! Sign up for our Email Newsletters here.

This Article is related to: Television and tagged , ,


Get The Latest IndieWire Alerts And Newsletters Delivered Directly To Your Inbox