'Scandal': Kerry Washington and the cast share crisis-management tips

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Kerry Washington knows how to spark a few rumors, even if her latest role on "Scandal" has taught her otherwise.

"I hear Kerry is very hard to work with, is that true?" Washington jokes about herself,, holding up her iPhone to the rest of the cast like a microphone. "I heard...She's very mean and controlling on set, is that true?"

"We're all her little dragons," replies co-star Darby Stanchfield.

The actress along with her colleagues on Shonda Rhimes' political thriller spoke to Zap2It at ABC's international upfront Sunday (May 20), sharing a few PR tips they picked up from while filming the show about the staff of a crisis-management firm. 

For Washington, the first move in a predicament is full disclosure.

"Tell the truth," she says. "And then ask yourself again, 'What am I holding back?' 'Cause that's usually the biggest problem is that people think they're being honest, but they're still holding back some things that you need to manage the crisis. ... We always have to assume that every client that walks in the door is not telling us about 20 percent of the problem. Keep them in the room, so they keep talking and there's nothing they're holding back."

The drama, which debuted in April and was renewed for a second season, chronicles the world of political crisis management, and is based on the real-life story of crisis-management consultant Judy Smith. Washington says of her real-life counterpart, "It's like having my newest, closest friend as the queen of advice."

The others seemed to concur. "Everybody needs [crisis management]. If you can afford it, use it, because at some point in your life, everybody's going to be in a crisis," co-star Columbus Short says. "And how awesome would it be to have Olivia Pope -- the real Olivia Pope, Judy Smith -- on your speed dial to fix your s***?" 

The cast couldn't offer any spoilers for next season, as they claim complete ignorance. Plus, Washington notes Rhimes had previously warned them, "The show's all about the secrets. Don't blow anything."

Photo/Video credit: Courtney Garcia
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