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Julia Louis-Dreyfus Talks Veep Cast Reunion to Encourage Voters in the Georgia Runoffs

Virginia Chamlee
·5-min read

Colleen Hayes/HBO The cast of HBO's Veep

When the cast of HBO’s Veep reunited in October for a virtual Democratic Party of Wisconsin fundraiser, even the error messages and dropped Zoom calls so prevalent in the COVID-19 era couldn't dampen the excitement.

"We raised a bunch of money but also, everybody just had such a good time. Even our rehearsal for it was so fun, with the tech errors and whatnot," executive producer David Mandel tells PEOPLE. "We thought, 'God, we gotta do this again.' "

Do it again they shall — this Sunday night, in fact, when the Veep cast reunites for another virtual fundraiser urging voters to turn out for the upcoming Georgia Senate runoff elections.

Actors from the show (including Julia Louis-Dreyfus, who played President Selina Meyer, Anna Chlumsky, Tony Hale and others) will participate in a live table read of the uncut script of an all-too-timely episode: one revolving around an election recount.

"We love the characters and we love working with each other," says Mandel. "This was the perfect opportunity."

Fans are able to donate $1 or more to the Show Up For Georgia to watch the event, scheduled for Sunday at 8 p.m. ET.

The Emmy-nominated season 5 episode “Mother” sees President Meyer demanding a recount of votes in Nevada be halted but only after she called for the recount in the first place amid her bid for reelection.

"At some point, people were pointing out — and news programs were pointing out — every day, the similarities between the episode and real life," Mandel tells PEOPLE. "It was like 2020 chose the table read for us."

Clips of episode have resurfaced lately for its striking (and, as social media users have pointed out, often amusing) similarities to Donald Trump's push against his own reelection loss.

Like the fictional Meyer camp, team Trump demanded recounts in the wake of his defeat to Joe Biden.

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Patrick Harbron Julia Louis-Dreyfus in Veep

Though the show ended in 2019 — after an Emmy-studded seven-season run — it has lived on in the Trump era, with many fans noting how the 45th president and his allies unwittingly echo the satire's twists and turns.

According to Louis-Dreyfus, even Veep cast members have found themselves surprised by the similarities.

"There’s a flurry of text chains," she says. "None of us can believe it."

Still, she jokes that some of the Trump campaign's recent moves have been so slapstick that they'd be unbelievable if written into Veep.

"So much of what's been going on, had it been in a script —" she says, before Mandel interjects, chuckling: "She would have yelled at me if I put that in a script."

"It’s too cartoony," Louis-Dreyfus says, laughing. "If he pitched Four Seasons Total Landscaping [the site of an odd Trump campaign press conference] — in between a porn shop and a crematorium — I would have said, 'Come on, we’re trying to tell a real story.' "

While the actress has made no secret of her political leanings, having appeared during the 2020 Democratic National Convention, she and Mandel are quick to note that the latest fundraiser isn't about any particular party.

"We don’t hide our personal affiliations, but that is not what this event is about," she says.

"That was one of the great things about Veep: We never said which party Selina was in," Mandel says. "This isn’t about a party. It's about the fact that everyone should vote and everyone should be able to vote."

Funds raised from the event will go toward registering voters in the weeks leading up to Georgia's runoff elections on Jan. 5, which are being held for both of its Senate seats. The outcome will determine whether Democrats or Republicans have control of the Senate once President-elect Biden takes office.

Getty Julia Louis-Dreyfus

HBO/Kobal/REX/Shutterstock Julia Louis-Dreyfus in Veep

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Some still-unannounced special guests are also slated to appear in the fundraiser.

In a promo for the table read, Louis-Dreyfus poked fun at a November press conference featuring Trump attorney Rudy Giuliani, in which he could be seen with a liquid that looked like hair dye dripping down his face.

Louis-Dreyfus spoke directly to the camera in the promo, dye dripping down her own face, as she dabbed a handkerchief over her upper lip.

“Over the last few weeks, many brave and patriotic Americans have come forward, having witnessed similarities between our ongoing election and the TV show Veep,” she said in the promo. “And not just a singular example, but a pattern that repeats itself over and over. Literally thousands, or hundreds of thousands, of cases.”

As for whether the virtual reunions could one day lead to future episodes of the show, Mandel and Louis-Dreyfus don't rule anything out.

"I think it’s a possibility. Everybody's pretty busy doing their own things [but] there's a possibility we could revisit it at some point, now that we don’t have to compete for outrageous behavior," Mandel tells PEOPLE, alluding to Trump's loss.

"The future of Veep is tied to the future of our country," he says. "There needs to be a return to normalcy — where Selina seems outrageous again — then, maybe, we have a shot."