Reese Witherspoon and Kerry Washington are here to brighten your day with tales of meeting at Leonardo DiCaprio’s house.
Little Fires Everywhere, the Hulu miniseries they’re both starring in and executive producing, makes its debut on Hulu tomorrow to give us all one more welcome distraction from the world outside.
It tells the story of two moms (Washington and Witherspoon) who live very different lives, but who end up entangled with each other and each other’s kids, and the project came about because Reese was just so taken by the book it’s based on, written by Celeste Ng.
“The book was just so beautiful,” she told E!’s Will Marfuggi. “The way she describes motherhood, the way she describes…sometimes as a kid, you connect with a woman who isn’t your mother, but she mothers you. And I think a lot of people feel that way, like I don’t understand my mom, but that woman is so amazing.”
Reese says she and her producing partners thought of Kerry immediately, and she and Kerry had already been good friends for a decade (after meeting at Leo DiCaprio’s house for a script reading…NBD).
“I wanted to work with her for so long, and she’s Kerry Washington,” Reese says. “It just felt like a perfect partnership ’cause it’s very equally balanced. I needed her to carry half this production.”
“We really did birth this baby together,” adds Kerry.
On a show all about motherhood, both women say they thought a lot about their own mothers, since they realized that’s the generation they were playing.
“At some point in preproduction, I think we were looking at the costumes for all the teenagers and we were like, I had those shorts! I had that hat!” Kerry recalls. “And I was like, oh, we were teenagers in the 90s. We’re basically playing our mothers to varying degrees.”
“It was really kind of an interesting journey back in time,” Reese says, explaining how everything her mother used to talk about started running through her head again over the course of filming.
The show was also, in a way, a journey forward in time, as it’s a production mainly run by women when that’s still rare in Hollywood. Hit play above to hear more from Reese and Kerry on their “unique” partnership!
Little Fires Everywhere premieres Wednesday on Hulu.
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