Viola Davis is a woman of many talents. Every performance I’ve seen of her is a testament to the vast and varied lives of black women.
She owns the characters she decides to play, even those that don’t portray black women or members of the black community positively.
Davis stated in an interview bbc Back in 2020, her work on The Help felt like a betrayal of herself and her community, as it portrayed the lives of black maids in Mississippi in the 1960s, but did so by pandering to a white audience.
“The Help” is essentially intended to allow white audiences to digest the racism and tensions that occurred during this time, but without exposing any of them to the long-term racial tensions in America.
In 2015, Davis won an Emmy for “How to Get Away with Law.” Although I never made it past the first two episodes, both my friend and my mother at the time had a deep love and interest in the show and her character, Annalize Keating.
I’ve always admired Davis’ craft and the roles she decides to play. Her performance in “Fences” is my all-time favorite.
The way she and Denzel Washington played their characters and brought them to life in that movie was heartfelt. It’s an ode to the many black men and women who all relate to their lives in some way.
In 2017, Davis won an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress for her performance in “Fences.”
Her Oscar for this film was a well-deserved performance and made me cry and rethink how my relationship with my family was shaped and tainted by my parents’ dreams that never came true.
She also won Tony Awards for Best Actress in a Play for her performance on stage in 2010 for “Fences” and in 2001 for her role in “Hedley II”.
In 2017, Davis was named by Zack Sharf as the most nominated black actress in Oscar history. independent line.
As the most nominated black actress at the time, she received only four nominations, highlighting her underrepresentation in film and calling into question the low number of roles and stories for black women in the industry.
However, just six years later, Davis has entered a coveted position in the entertainment industry: EGOT status. Only 18 people have achieved this status. EGOT status is earned if someone in the entertainment industry wins an Emmy, Grammy, Oscar, and Tony.
at 65day At the annual Grammy Awards on Feb. 5, Davis won Best Audiobook, Narration and Storytelling Recording for her book “Find Me,” which details her childhood and how she Be who she is today.
Davis’ win at the Grammy marks her becoming the third black woman and the fourth black person to achieve EGOT status.
Those before her include Whoppi Goldberg, John Legend and Jennifer Hudson. Three black women reaching this status in entertainment speaks volumes about the influence and impact black women have had on film, television and music.
It also demonstrates the need for more women and minorities to enter the industry with greater representation and opportunity.
Stories about black and brown people need to be told authentically, not through the lens and perspective of a majority of white people who can’t talk about the lives of minorities because they don’t stand for themselves.
Davis understands this need in the entertainment industry, and I hope that as she takes on her new status, she continues to champion more opportunities for Black and brown women and men to tell their stories.