Isaiah on Handling Emotional Reactions to New Film

By RAPHAEL CHESTANG

September 16, 2013

Isaiah Washington knew the responsibility he was taking on when he joined Blue Caprice -- a film loosely based on the Beltway sniper attacks -- but he still wasn't sure what to expect when they screened the movie in Maryland, where many of the audience members had been affected by the shootings.

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"From my point of view they were still suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder," Washington said of the crowd.

During the Q & A portion of the screening, the first hand that went up seemed to represent the attitude of many of those in attendance.

After admitting that she had initially watched the film with intention of tearing it down for insensitivity, the viewer thanked the cast and filmmakers "for validating what happened to [them] and handling it with such care."

"Although we're basing a lot of the events on true events, it's not a biopic," Washington said, explaining that the movie is more of a father-son tale. "We didn't want to go down that rabbit hole of trying to give the world answers."

Washington's next film film, Blackbird, also deals with sensitive issues. In the movie, Washington plays a sympathetic father with a gay son in the South, and he addressed those that might suspect that he took the role in hopes of redeeming himself for reportedly making anti-gay slurs regarding a former Grey's Anatomy cast mate.

"The people that are saying that are probably too young to remember that I broke ground playing a gay character [in Get on the Bus]," said Washington, who claims that he was ostracized in New York for his role in the 1996 drama.

Watch the video for more. Blue Caprice is in theaters now.

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