American actress and producer Viola Davis was born on August 11, 1965. She is the only African-American to win the Triple Crown of Acting. She has received numerous honors, including an Academy Award, a Primetime Emmy Award, and two Tony Awards.
In 2012 and 2017, Time magazine named her one of the 100 most influential people in the world, and in 2020, The New York Times placed her ninth among the top actors of the twenty-first century.
Viola Davis’s Early Life
Viola Davis was born in St. Matthews, South Carolina, on August 11, 1965. Her parents are Mae Alice Davis and Dan Davis. She was born on her grandmother’s property on the Singleton Plantation.
Her father was a horse trainer, and her mother worked as a maid, factory worker, and housewife. She is the second youngest of six children, with four sisters and one brother.
Her parents moved her and two of her older siblings to Central Falls, Rhode Island, shortly after she was born, sending her other siblings with her grandparents.
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Family Viola Devis
In June 2003, Davis married actor Julius Tennon, an accomplished actor, and producer. Genesis, the couple’s infant daughter, was adopted in 2011. Davis also has two stepchildren from Tennon’s past partnerships.
Davis is a devout Christian who attends Oasis Church in Los Angeles on a regular basis.
Viola Davis’s Education and The “Group 22”
She attended Central Falls High School, which she credits in part for her interest in the arts and her passion for theatrical performing. She participated in the government TRIO Upward Bound and TRIO Student Support Services programs as a teen.
Viola Davis’ skill was spotted by Bernard Masterson, a director of the Young People’s School for the Performing Arts in West Warwick, Rhode Island.
She attended Rhode Island College after high school, focusing on drama, and participated in the National Student Exchange before graduating in 1988. She then spent four years at the Juilliard School, where she was a member of the Drama Division “Group 22.” (1989–93).
Viola is currently the CEO/Co-Founder of JuVee Productions. Check out her Instagram here.
Entry in Drama
Davis made her professional theatrical debut as Denis in an off-Broadway production of William Shakespeare’s comedy “As You Like It”, alongside Elizabeth McGovern, at the Delacorte Theatre in 1992. Davis made her Broadway debut as Vera in the inaugural Broadway revival of August Wilson’s Seven Guitars, alongside Keith David, in 1996.
On March 6, the drama premiered on Broadway at the Walter Kerr Theatre. Her performance received significant acclaim.
Davis obtained her Screen Actors Guild card in 1996 for doing one day of work in the film” The Substance of Fire”, playing a nurse who transfers a blood vial to the future, How to Get Away with Murder co-star Timothy Hutton (1996).
Viola Davis Hollywood Breakthrough
In 2001, she appeared on Broadway in another August Wilson play, King Hedley II, as Tonya, a “35-year-old mother arguing eloquently for the right to abort a pregnancy.” Her portrayal drew praise from critics, and she won her first Tony Award for Best Featured Actress in a Play, as well as a Drama Desk Award.
She also gave fleeting performances in the romantic comedy masterpiece Kate and Leopold (2001) and the drama Antowne Fisher (2002).
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Viola Davis appeared in the romantic comedy thriller Knight and Day, starring Tom Cruise and Cameron Diaz, as well as the romantic comedy, Eat Pray Love, starring Julia Roberts, in 2010.
She also played Dr. Minerva in It’s Kind of a Funny Story (2010), a coming-of-age film written and directed by Anna Boden and Ryan Fleck and adapted from Ned Vizzini’s 2006 novel.
What movies was Viola Davis in?
Viola Davis starred as Aibileen Clark, a housemaid in 1960s Mississippi, in Tate Taylor’s film adaption of Kathryn Stockett’s novel The Help, alongside Emma Stone, Octavia Spencer, Bryce Dallas Howard, and Jessica Chastain Davis described her role as channeling her mother and grandmother.
She received accolades for her performances and went on to win two Screen Actors Guild Awards, as well as her second Academy Award nomination, Golden Globe and BAFTA Award nominations.
She also starred in Blackhat, a thriller directed by Michael Mann and starring Chris Hemsworth, in 2015. Davis was also an executive producer on the crime drama film Lila & Eve, in which she and Jennifer Lopez played the main characters.
In the courtroom drama Custody, for which she also worked as an executive producer, and portrayed Amanda Waller in the blockbuster Suicide Squad, based on the very celebrated DC Comics series featuring the same name.
Viola’s recent nailings
Davis played Amanda Waller again in the superhero picture The Suicide Squad in 2021. She also co-starred with Sandra Bullock in the 2021 drama film The Unforgivable, directed by Nora Fingscheidt and released on November 24, 2021.
Viola featured uncredited in two episodes of the program Peacemaker Season 1, “A Whole New Whirled” and “It’s Cow or Never.” Davis executive produces and stars as former First Lady Michelle Obama in the Showtime drama series The First Lady. It debuted in April 2022.
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