And yes, there was a "ton" of improvisation during the day-long shoot

By Adam Carlson
Updated September 26, 2015 03:40 PM

We all know how entertaining the Apple Music commercial starring Mary J. Blige, Taraji P. Henson, and Kerry Washington looked when it aired during the Emmy Awards last Sunday – but what was it like to shoot?

“It’s hard to explain how much fun it was,” Washington, 38, told Entertainment Weekly Editor Henry Goldblatt during a recent sit-down.

The vibe of the day-long shoot, overseen by Selma director Ava DuVernay, “was really like four girlfriends getting together to reminisce,” Washington said.

And yes, there was “a ton” of improvisation, she said. DuVernay ,43, even played some of the ladies’ favorite music.

So what’s one track that’s close to Washington’s heart? Shirley Murdoch’s “As We Lay.”

“I love that song,” she said. “I used to sing that song alone in my college dorm room with all the heartbreak you can possibly have.”