Scoop: Scandal Season 3 Episode Order Trimmed in Wake of Kerry Washington's Pregnancy News

Kerry Washington Pregnancy ScandalOlivia Pope’s overworked Gladiators can finally make use of their saved-up vacation days: ABC has trimmed Scandal‘s Season 3 episode order from 22 to 18, TVLine has learned.

The network gave no official explanation for the cutback, but it’s safe to say the decision was made in response to the real-life pregnancy of leading lady Kerry Washington. The actress’ spring due date would’ve made shooting those final four episodes next to impossible (and, according to sources, writing Olivia out of the show for an extended period of time was not an option.)

PHOTOS | How 8 Shows ‘Handled’ Real-Life Pregnancies — Which Ways Work for Scandal?

As it is, shooting around Washington’s growing baby bump will prove challenging enough for the series — which, as TVLine previously reported, has chosen not to incorporate the pregnancy into Olivia’s storyline.

Scandal will have aired 10 episodes as of next week’s fall finale, which means eight episodes will remain when the show returns on Feb. 27.

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  1. iMember says:

    I’m okay with this. This season has been pretty okay. Keeping it short will tighten the reigns.

  2. Evan says:

    Probably for the best, but I wish we could’ve gotten a full season. The good news is that the pace will be breakneck (although it already is so….).

  3. Catelyn says:

    On one hand, it makes for a tighter storyline but nooooooooo

  4. leelee says:

    Wow!!! But totally understandable. Maybe it’ll make for a 24 episode season next year.

    • the girl says:

      One can only hope. I would LOVE to get two 12 episode blocks of Scandal next year, seeing as S1 was a half season and now S3 is being shortened.

      • the girl says:

        On another note, congrats again to Kerry Washington – I am as happy for her as any selfish TV viewer losing out on her favorite show can be (lol).

        • cee says:

          I would like it to end for selfish reasons so I can see all the episodes on a paid channel at one
          setting otherwise my better half can binge on various programs. Which we can not see during the regular work week. Love this program believe me just can’t stay up for it.

  5. Esaul says:

    We already know Scandal does great with tightened seasons, so I’m excited. But I’m upset because this is the only show that gets me through the week.

  6. Douglas from Brazil says:

    So the season finale will air in April?

    • andrew43 says:

      Most likely not. It will likely air in May, but with more repeats along the way to make room for the show to end on May sweeps.

      • Jillian says:

        Can’t see that happening considering ABC’s new way of running shows straight through (minus holidays). I envision the finale will be in April or they will start a week or two later than planned.

  7. Ram510 says:

    Understandable, but NOOOO!!!! I need all the Scandal I can get, not less! Will this show ever get a full 22 episode season. At this rate it’ll take 7 seasons or more to reach syndication. I hope ABC gives this show 24 episodes next season like how they keep doing with Grey’s.

  8. Julie says:

    Come on, really? We already have too many breaks between episodes this time of year. Surly the writers could come up with a way to cover up the pregnancy.

    • Catelyn says:

      I don’t think its so much about covering the pregnancy as it is that she would be due in the spring and may not be up to filming later episodes. And they’ve barely had breaks this season.

    • Evangeline says:

      It’s not about covering up the pregnancy. Kerry is due in March or April. She won’t be around to film the last four episodes of the season, so they’re shortening it ahead of time to make sure that the second arc of the season can be fully told. It’s not fun losing episodes, but it makes sense to shorten the season.

  9. Mike R. says:

    I think this is for the best. It’s not like the show has any chance of being cancelled.

  10. Eric7740 says:

    I completely understand why this is being done, but I hate that I’m getting less Scandal, its my favorite show this tv season and we already have to put up an 11 week!!! Hiatus after this coming Thursday!!! Then we’ll probably have to wait til October once the season ends in April!!!!

  11. ktbanks says:

    Noooo! I’m happy for Kerry, and completely understand, but Noooooo!

  12. Tran 2.0 says:

    Looks good to me. Hope Kerry Washington comes back on the set of Scandal after her maternity leave.

  13. Alyssa says:

    I was at a conference yesterday in Boston that Kerry was scheduled to speak at and due to “unforseen circumstances” she was unable to be there in person and had to appear via satellite. I wonder if this had something to do with it, like she had to film instead of having a day off.

  14. Thank god. This show has gone off its rockers. They need a break to reign this show back in.

  15. sarah says:

    a shame but nobody’s fault

  16. Jake says:

    That’s odd for such a hit show, they could easily put her in a hospital bed or a coma.

    • Chris says:

      The fans would not want Olivia in a coma for 4 episodes. The show revolves around her. She’s the lead not a supporting player.

  17. JJM says:

    Perhaps they’ll give season 4 26 episodes? Give back the additional episodes they’re taking? They did it with Grey’s Anatomy back in season one (which was originally 14 episodes – not the 9 that aired) and gave season 2 the additional 5 episodes thus giving it 27 episodes.

    • Philipp says:

      The remaining 5 had already been filmed and shown together with a full 22-episode season, so you can see why this is different and probably won’t happen.

  18. bmarie3668 says:

    Congratulations to @kerrywashington. Blessings & Best wishes. Your the best actress I’ve Seen in a very long time!!!

  19. andrew hass says:

    I can understand why ABC is doing this but this could be a good thing for the show too.The actress could give birth earlier than expected and then the show might have been screwed up then.This way the show knows in advance that there’ll be lesser episodes this season and can plan accordingly.

  20. Jen says:

    You don’t see Ginny Goodwin needing a shortened season!

    • madhatter360 says:

      Once Upon a Time is much more of an ensemble show. If Snow is absent for a few episodes the show will do fine. Now if Jennifer Morrison was pregnant, then you might have a problem.

      • LB says:

        Also, I’m guessing the timing of Ginny’s pregnancy within Once’s shooting schedule differs from the timing of Kerry’s pregancy within Scandal’s shooting schedule. Not to mention the fact that viewers are accustomed to seeing Kerry dressed in much more slinky outfits. Ginny can get away with frumpier clothes.

    • dragons3 says:

      Isn’t Goodwin’s baby due this summer? Totally different from being due during the filming season.

    • Cole says:

      Yeah, but Snow’s already said she wants a baby so they’re clearly working it into the show. The difference is that Once is a show that can be toyed with whereas Scandal is written with a story to tell and Shonda is uncompromising in her vision. Each has it’s own positives and negatives, but to compare actresses is misguided at best.

  21. Ange says:

    I was hoping they would write in sending her underground for a period of time while they sorted out the whole mom/dad who is the real bad person story. It would also open up for a Huck/Quinn/Charlie let’s see who the true bad ass really is story and also pin Fitz against Jake with Cyrus losing his mind

  22. nguber says:

    Reblogged this on iwatch2much and commented:
    This is a great thing. This will give the writers time to tighten up the story and not have to do so much filler. This will also give Kerry plenty of time off from when she has her baby till the start of season 4 production.

  23. Cheyenne says:

    Oh snap!

  24. Fernanda says:

    a shorten season could be better than a long season, I prefer 13 episodes each season from my faves tv shows. I remember Sex and the City who cut their episodes for SGP pregnancy. HIMY’s Alyson Hannigan couldn’t be in the final season 4 episodes but the producers filmed the finally with her before the season ends. She was pregnant again in season 7 and her character also was pregnant.

    Shonda worked with Ellen Pompeo and Catherina Scorsone pregnancies in Greys and Private, Ellen stayed in bed because her final days before she gave birth her child, but with Catherina she could finish her work because her final pregnancy time was the same time the season could wrapped its production, but sadly her storyline was too tragic for a pregnant character.

  25. Jasmine says:

    As a new Grandmommy of a 3 day old adorable baby girl, I say YES to the abbreviated season. My daughter, the new Mommy and an avid Scandal fan, will be disappointed. Although she worked up to a week before due date, she was counting down the days. Our baby arrived exactly on her Due Date, so I think taking as much time off as possible is probably a good idea. Best of luck to Kerry and her family as I sure this new baby will bring them all great joy.

  26. shortened season for scandal, leave’s a few week’s free for Jeff Perry (Cyrus) to head back over to the Grey’s family and a return of Thatcher Grey, surely he has to meet his grandkids someday.

    • Jillian says:

      They should have brought Thatcher back when Lexie died. He was much closer to her than he ever was to Meredith. I think that ship has sailed now and this season is supposed to be the season of Yang since Sandra Oh is leaving.

  27. David4 says:

    The best “season” is still the original 13 episode order from season 2. Maybe we can even get 26 episodes next year because of the huge hit it is.

  28. ScriptBoy says:

    Lovely for Kerry Washington and her husband, but what really blows about this is that the show’s crew members had been previously scheduled to work on & get paid for those additional episodes. 4 episodes represents about 32 days of production work (or more) for each crew member. That’s over a month and a half of work they’re getting shorted on the season. It’s a tremendous hit to the wallets & pocketbooks of people who’ve worked so hard to make that show the success it is — and who are the least prepared to weather the loss of income. Though Washington is, no doubt, also taking a financial hit, her income is so significant that it won’t truly impact her day-to-day existence — or that of her family, unlike those of the members of her crew. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not suggesting that Kerry shouldn’t have a child if she wishes, just that the responsible and unselfish thing to do would’ve been to time her pregnancy/childbirth to coincide with the show’s post-season hiatus and to not hurt the livelihood of her co-workers and their families.

    • Lash says:

      Are you serious right now? You are an asshole of the first order! This I am positively sure of. If you knew anything about KW she would go into her own pocket and pay everyone who would take a financial hit because of her pregnancy preventing them from work. How dare you accuse her of being selfish. I swear some of you ppl are something else…smh.

    • Alex says:

      Sure, she should have to time her pregnancy to the convenience of other people.That’s perfectly reasonable. Why should a woman expect to have control over her own body? That just would be so wrong if she did.

  29. Drop thrill says:

    Scriptboy it get over yourself!!!

  30. Em says:

    Hey, a lot of people do plan their pregnancies. I have worked in a law firm as an associate and planned my pregnancies to coincide with less busy times of the year, as have many of my friends who work as contractors. Yes, it is stressful to plan within a small window each year, as getting pregnant is not a given, but you try for it. So, I don’t think it’s fair to call Scriptboy an asshole, especially since he is making a valid point generally. I don’t work in the entertainment industry but every single one of my friends (male and female) who does has made a similar point in regards to this story — definitely a lot of sympathy for the crew.

    In any event, all this stuff is speculation anyway, and we don’t know what’s going on BTS at Shondaland or at the network or with KW for that matter.

  31. Isaac says:

    Mixed feelings on this. I’m happy for Kerry Washington and I love her, but to stall the whole show because of one person? If I was any other actor/actress on the show this is when I’d start resenting Kerry.

  32. it’s safe to say the decision was made in response to the real-life pregnancy of leading lady kerry washington.

  33. That Fan of Mine says:

    You people don’t have much to do, do you?

  34. Jazz says:

    Can you tell me when next season of scandal will screen on Australian TV?