Scandal Casts Khandi Alexander as Olivia's Mom

Get More: Casting News

Khandi-Alexander-ScandalScandal‘s about to have a “Whoa, mama!” moment.

Khandi Alexander (Treme, CSI: Miami) has been cast in the recurring role of Maya Lewis, late mother of Kerry Washington‘s Olivia Pope, and will start appearing in flashbacks beginning with this Thursday’s episode (10/9c on ABC), according to The Hollywood Reporter.

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Alexander currently stars in HBO’s Treme, which kicks off an abbreviated fourth and final season Dec. 1 on HBO.

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Last week’s Scandal included a doozy of a plot twist involving the character Alexander will play. (Click here for our recap if you don’t mind getting spoiled.)

Excited about Alexander joining Scandal? Looking forward to flashbacks of Liv and her mom? Sound off below!

Comments (32)

  • Awesome! Love it!

    Comment by Carm – November 5, 2013 03:29 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Seems like a spoiler. This woman is pretty old so why would she be casted as just for flashbacks.

    Comment by Mark – November 5, 2013 03:32 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • While our definitions of old definitely differ, I agree. She’s the wrong age to play Liv’s mom in flashbacks.

      Comment by tp – November 5, 2013 03:47 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • My guess is it’s not just for flashbacks, especially since her role will be recurring. I think it means Olivia’s mother is still alive.

      Comment by Larc – November 5, 2013 03:52 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • I’m with you on that!

        Comment by Mary – November 5, 2013 04:20 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • She’s only 20 years older than Washington. If she were any younger it would have been a teenage mother if she’s playing her mom now.

      Comment by SJ – November 5, 2013 07:08 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • I’m not sure you get it. It’s only confirmed to be for flashbacks. I forget when they said she died, but if in the flashback Olivia is 8, the mom could be 40, played by an actress currently 49 or so. Now having a 55 year old play an 8 year old’s mother? That doesn’t make sense. Besides, they can play with the characters ages at certain time points.

        Comment by GTS – November 5, 2013 07:39 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Interesting…..and impressive that they held onto this casting announcement for as long as they did.

    Comment by Alichat – November 5, 2013 03:33 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Yay Khandi!! I can’t wait to learn her story

    Comment by TvPeong – November 5, 2013 03:51 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I loved Khandi in Newsradio! I can’t believe she’s old enough to play Kerry Washington’s mother. Great casting.

    Comment by Steven – November 5, 2013 03:55 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Until earlier this year, I had only seen Khandi in CSI: Miami. (And that’s not really a fair showcase of talent because that was such a cheese ball show). Then, earlier this March, I started watching the first few seasons of ER, and Khandi blew me away. She was only a supporting character, but some of her performances were just gripping. So, despite the age factor, I think she’s a good ‘get’ for Scandal.

    Comment by lmjo – November 5, 2013 04:01 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Check her out in TREME, then, she is a major character with storylines built around her and she is *great.*

      Comment by steve o (@ravenwing263) – November 5, 2013 04:07 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
      • Her performance on Treme was absolutely amazing. I cannot believe she never even got a nomination for any award for it. I don’t watch Scandal, but they are lucky to have her.

        Comment by Tahoe Mike – November 6, 2013 03:32 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Great choice! Alexander is an amazing actress! No way Olivia’s mom is dead! Sure, she’ll appear in flashbacks, but I doubt that’s all we’re going to see her in.

    Comment by Mik – November 5, 2013 04:04 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I love Khandi Alexander and am thrilled to see her get a high profile role like this.

    If it turns out Liv’s mom is alive, though, we’re veering awfully close to ALIAS territory here.

    Comment by Mackenzie – November 5, 2013 04:22 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Its not like hair and makeup can’t do things to make her look a bit younger in flashbacks.

    Comment by Tony – November 5, 2013 04:24 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • SO HAPPY about this casting choice! I feel like the recent episode where the mother with the bomb tries to clear her son’s name has something to do with Olivia’s mom. Like maybe they had to fake her death so she could continue doing her undercover work without compromising her family’s safety. I remember reading that Shonda was working on an Alias-like show, maybe instead of that she built this storyline into Scandal? Either way, EXCITING times ahead :)

    Comment by Justine – November 5, 2013 04:30 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Kerry is 36 and Khandi is 56. So if she’s still alive she could’ve have had Olivia at 20. If she’s not alive, Khandi still looks younger for her age. Great casting.

    Comment by Kyle C. – November 5, 2013 04:58 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • In the current time lime I agree, she’s perfect for her mom. I am hoping that it is a case of “I knew he was going to try to kill me” and she’s alive.

      Comment by tp – November 5, 2013 05:04 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • This may be the best thing I’ve heard all day!!!!

    Comment by KND – November 5, 2013 05:19 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • No way she is on just for flashbacks. She will arise from the grave before the season ends.

    Comment by GeoDiva – November 5, 2013 05:20 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Reblogged this on iwatch2much and commented:
    Oh snap. Loveee Khandi Alexander. I can see why they cast her.

    Comment by nguber – November 5, 2013 05:39 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Great casting choice SCANDAL! Can’t wait :)

    Comment by Scandalfan23 – November 5, 2013 06:12 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • She wasn’t even on any of the commenter’s radars so it’s a surprise. Not that we have any say haha! Most people guessed Phylicia Rashad or Lynn Whitfield. I would’ve never thought of Khandi Alexander for this but she’s the perfect choice. Can’t wait to see it this week!!

    Comment by Jules – November 5, 2013 06:48 PM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • She’s def alive, “thought to be dead” parents/children/siblings are rarely dead in TV land.

    Comment by Joe – November 6, 2013 01:57 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Khandi will make it work but I was rooting for Lynn Whitfield. Can’t wait to watch either way!

    Comment by Bran – November 6, 2013 04:06 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Maya Lewis is alive, I have a feeling that Fitz may have been assigned to shot down the plane but I think he helped Olivia’s mom get away.

    Comment by Linds (@Lwass007) – November 6, 2013 07:13 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
    • Ohhhhh, that would be an awesome twist!

      Comment by CrazyLady82 – November 6, 2013 07:52 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I guess she was cast a bit ago if the flshback episodes are starting Thursday (tomorrow).
    Can’t wait for tomorrow’s episode

    Comment by Ayannali – November 6, 2013 08:59 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • I was also an advocate for Lynn Whitfield, but Khandi Alexander definitely is full of sass. I think she will handle this role well, and I am looking forward to seeing her in it.

    Comment by LaLa – November 6, 2013 09:59 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Frankly, I am expending so much mental energy on worry about Jake’s on-going well-being that Mom-casting flew over my head.
    Hooray for Khandi though. Meanwhile, it is All Jake with me and my Worry Beads.

    Comment by Joanna Dyer – November 10, 2013 10:09 AM PDT  Reply To This Post
  • Khandi Alexander! Great casting. Khandi deserves this part and you think the ratings are upnoow——well just you wait!!!! Khandi is GREAT!!!

    Comment by elaine coffey – November 17, 2013 01:06 AM PDT  Reply To This Post

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