A Queen: Viola Davis

 

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In Hollywood, some actors are put in a cage because they are said to be good enough to play only certain roles. When it comes to black actors, they’re usually playing a minor, unimportant character that dies before the movie ends or they’re the lead role in a slave movie. Things have changed, and we now have actors of color leading all types of movies, playing prominent roles, and no longer falling into stereotypes. One of the actresses that have broken with these stereotypes is Viola Davis.

She has starred in many films that have broken with stereotypes, the most recent one being Widows. She remarked in an interview that it [Widows] was a big step, because she played Liam Neeson’s wife, and it was the first time that the fact that they were an interracial couple was not the moving plot of the film. She starred in films like Doubt and Suicide Squad and was nominated for her second Oscar for her role in The Help. She finally won the coveted golden statue for her role in Fences, a role that she also originated on Broadway and won a Tony Award for. Besides having a vast resume filled with films of every kind, she is also highly educated, having received her BFA in Acting from Rhode Island College and her MFA in Acting from the Juilliard School, one of the most prestigious acting universities in the world.Related image

She is a vocal supporter of diversifying roles for black people; she wants to see more people of color in leading roles that don’t perpetuate stereotypes. It should be no surprise that Viola Davis is a big activist since her mother was also an activist for equal rights during the 1960s and Viola was even briefly imprisoned alongside her when they were arrested at a rally. It runs in her blood to fight for what is right. She has been one of the most prominent voices in the Me Too movement.

Alongside her long and vast career and activism, Viola Davis is the only black woman to have won an Oscar, Emmy, and Tony, which is known as the Triple Crown of Acting. She became the first black woman to ever win the Emmy for Leading Actress in a Drama Series for her role in How To Get Away With Murder. This show has broken a lot of barriers in mainstream and primetime television: it’s written and created by Shonda Rhimes, another black woman who has also made history by having a diverse cast and by presenting things on television that had never been seen ⎯⎯a key moment being when Viola Davis’ character Annalise removes all of her makeup on camera, making a statement in terms of the beauty standards set by film and television. Related image

Viola Davis broke every record by being nominated and winning multiple awards that had never been won by a black woman. She has been a trailblazer in every aspect and has been using her platform to make sure that future generations of black actors can have the same opportunities she’s had and more. She is a force to be reckoned with, and we shall see what she will do next. Image result for viola davis me too

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