Get To Know The Young Olivia Pope, Yara Shahidi

November 8, 2013  |  

So I know you watched Scandal last night (don’t worry, our recap is on the way!). Outside of finding out more about Harrison’s background and watching Olivia get gully with Fitz, we had the chance to see the young Olivia Pope in a flashback scene where Rowan Pope prepares to inform her that Olivia’s mother was killed in that infamous airplane crash. We got a brief glimpse of the young actress, Yara Shahidi, with her curly ponytails and glasses, but you’ve seen her adorable face before on more than one occasion.

Shahidi, 12, is probably best known for her work in the Eddie Murphy movie, Imagine That. Plus she made an appearance in Salt and most recently in the Tyler Perry-led action film, Alex Cross. Shahidi has done ad work for McDonald’s, Ralph Lauren, Target, Gap Kids and a wealth of other companies. Shahidi and her young brother Sayeed are both currently on the show “The First Family,” which comes on Centric. An interesting fact about Shahidi and her brother is that they’re second cousins to rapper Nas. The world is maaaad small!

I actually had an inkling that they would pick her to play Olivia Pope, as they have similar cheekbones and lips, and plus, kid black Hollywood is pretty small, so imagine my surprise when she did end up in last night’s episode. We might so more of Shahidi in this role if we get more flashbacks of Olivia as a child, and I hope we do, because this little lady is one talented actress who deserves as much shine as she can get! Congratulations Yara!

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