INTERVIEW: Scandal's Tony Goldwyn tells us Fitz's new obsession — and it isn't Olivia Pope
In our exclusive interview, Scandal star, Tony Goldwyn, shares what fans can expect from Season 4 and how Fitz is doing in the wake of everything that happened last season.
In the Season 3 finale, Fitz's world was turned completely upside down in more ways than one. He discovered his wife was raped by his father, his son was killed and he won the presidential election. Which of these situations will hit Fitz the hardest when the show returns later this month? Goldwyn said it will be the death of his son that will most affect Fitz.
"That trumps everything," Goldwyn revealed. "The loss of a child is the worst thing anyone can possibly imagine and it will consume Fitz. He's obsessed about it and it's completely dominated his life."
Getting into that heavy headspace has been hard on the actor. "It's a lot, [having] that as your baseline in every circumstance," Goldwyn admitted about playing a father who has lost a son. "Jerry's this sort of character in every scene, whether he's a part of it or not. He's just a specter, as it is to those who've lost a child."
Jerry's death will also do something to Fitz that a lot of Olivia/Fitz shippers may not be happy to hear. "It diminishes the place that Olivia Pope occupies in his life, even though they're not together. She's not in his orbit."
OK, we understand that Fitz is going through some hard times, but ouch. The Scandal Season 4 trailer shows Fitz desperately trying to get a hold of Olivia, but she's apparently off on a beach (we assume) with Jake. If Olivia isn't in Fitz's orbit after Jerry's death, will that keep her farther away? Olivia has to return to D.C. at some point, but what will it take to get her off that beach?
Also, if Fitz isn't thinking about Olivia, could that mean that he and Mellie are in a better place? Not even close. "Fitz and Mellie are struggling profoundly with the death of their son," Goldwyn said. "Fitz has sort of managed to channel his grief and his energy into his work as president. So, we get even deeper into the transformed Fitz and Mellie relationship, which remains very complicated and very contradictory."
Well, it's almost comforting to know that nothing has changed between Fitz and Mellie, yet it's fairly obvious that things are going to continue to get more and more complicated for all the characters. The constantly changing story lines is something that Goldwyn loves about working on the series.
"The thing that I was worried about when starting to do a TV series is: At what point do you start repeating yourself? That just hasn't happened. [Scandal creator, Shonda Rhimes] is pursuing these characters and relationships and themes of the show constantly in new and shocking ways."
For three seasons, fans have fallen more and more in love with Fitz, despite the fact that he's not always a good guy. Goldwyn feels the same way about his alter ego. "The best part for me is the contrast in Fitz," Goldwyn revealed. "He's never one thing. At the point where he becomes sort of adorable, he then does something that's just completely reprehensible, and vice versa."
With everything that poor Fitz has been through recently, it would almost be nice if the president could snap his fingers and make his wish come true. What would Goldwyn wish for Fitz if he could? Hint: The answer shouldn't surprise any true Scandal fan.
"I know it's not going to happen," Goldwyn said with a laugh, "but I would like for him to be able to successfully persuade Olivia to commit to him. What he's been trying to do since the end of Season 1 and she keeps rejecting him. Fitz feels, and I would agree with him, that if they would just declare and commit, that they could be a very positive force in each other's lives and in the world."
After the short trip into a fantasy world, Goldwyn quickly came back down to earth. "I think probably the show would be over if that happened," he admitted. So, I say let's get back to the drama and the insanity.
If you need to catch up before the new season, you're in luck. Scandal: The Complete Third Season will be released on DVD Tuesday, Sept. 23. That's just in time to catch the Season 4 premiere when it airs on Thursday, Sept. 25.