'Private Practice': KaDee Strickland and Shonda Rhimes talk rape storyline

shonda-kadee.jpg "Private Practice" creator Shonda Rhimes and star KaDee Strickland took part in the "TV With a Conscience" Panel at the Television Academy Foundation and Variety's 2011 TV Summit on Tuesday, Feb. 15.

The pair spoke to an audience of more than 300 about the show's controversial rape storyline, which Strickland's character, Charlotte, endured earlier this season.

"It's a dream for someone to be given material that you know is going to affect people's lives," Strickland says. "It was such a conscious effort...to get this as accurate as possible, to really legitimize the victim's experience, to humanize them in that process."

During the panel, Rhimes talked about how hard it was to watch the episode in which Charlotte was raped, but hoped it could help survivors and non-survivors to better understand the subject matter.

"This was not going to be a "fun" hour of television for anybody to watch. It was going to be a really hard hour of television for people to watch," Rhimes says. "And if they watched it, I thought they were going to be rewarded with perhaps understanding and experience that maybe they hadn't had."

Photo/Video credit: Television Academy Foundation's 2011 TV Summit