Viola Davis is at the peak of her career right now having been newly-crowned Best Supporting Actress at the Oscars for the role of Rose Maxson in Fences. She is the first African-American actress to have won an Emmy, a Tony and an Oscar.
Viola Davis played Amanda Waller in the 2016 film, Suicide Squad. The character has been described as both a 'badass' and as the 'immovable ice queen.' When interviewed on Jimmy Kimmel recently, Viola Davis showed the audience some of the injuries she suffered on set during the course of portraying her character’s badass antics.
Jimmy Kimmel asked Davis how Superman would react in a confrontation with Walker. Davis simply said, “She is a badass. Superman would quake in his tights.” Davis sums up her character, and others in the film, by saying, “We’re playing sociopaths.” Fans of How to Get Away With Murder consider Annalise Keating, the character Viola Davis plays in the show, to be a sociopath. Many fans feel that Davis was perfect for the role of Amanda Waller in Suicide Squad.
Viola Davis' role in Beautiful Creatures is a reimagining of a girl in servitude. A vastly different role to her character in How to Get Away With Murder, Davis plays Amma, a combination of two characters, a housekeeper and a librarian, from the fantasy novel of the same name. Davis says she is more a librarian than a housekeeper in the film.
Davis states that she told the director that she did not wish to clean houses in the movie and declared that “I feel that African-Americans in any story are defined too often as housekeepers and facilitators.” In the past, Davis would always accept any role she was offered. “Putting my foot down is a progression for me,” she added.
Prisoners was a different genre and role for Viola Davis. She said in an interview that she felt she was still getting stuck in supporting roles. Davis starred opposite Terrence Howard, who is best known for his recent work as Lucious Lion in Empire. They star as a married couple whose daughter and friend are kidnapped. It is a fast-paced crime thriller that touches on issues of right and wrong, values and morality.
Many have speculated that her performance in this movie was why Davis was cast in How to Get Away With Murder. Prisoners also stars Hugh Jackman as the father of the other girl. He starts a vigilante campaign and tries to enlist the help of Davis and Howard. But they have issues with his actions and consider reporting him.
Won't Back Down
Viola Davis was also cast in Won't Back Down with Maggie Gyllenhaal. Won't Back Down is a melodrama about the American Education system depicting a young mother and older teacher teaming up on a project to open a non-union school.
Though the film sparked some controversy with protesters claiming that it demonises the education system and unions, reviewers overall still loved Viola Davis’ performance and were impressed with the quality of the film and believed it sent a terrific message. Davis averred that she feels it is very important that films that send an important message continue to be made.