Viola Davis, the star of ABC’s hit crime drama, How To Get Away With Murder, delivered a moving speech Sunday (Jan. 25) night during an acceptance speech at the Screen Actors Guild Awards show. Davis took slight shots at Hollywood’s whiteness and lack of diversity while checking critics of her looks as well.
Davis, looking regal in a white dress with her afro proudly on display, was emotional as she accepted the SAG award for Outstanding Performance By A Female Actor In A Drama Series category. After speaking about how she tells her four-year-old daughter stories at night, she was able to weave a powerful narrative of how Hollywood has seemingly shut out actresses that look like her in an unrehearsed speech.
More from Huffington Post:
“When I tell my daughter stories at night, inevitably, a few things happen,” Davis said while accepting the award. “Number one, I use my imagination. I always start with life, and then I build from there. And then the other thing that happens is she always says, ‘Mommy, can you put me in the story?’ And you know, it starts from the top up.”
Davis called out the lack of diversity in Hollywood, and thanked the “How to Get Away With Murder” producers (including Shonda Rhimes) for thinking a “mysterious woman could be a 49-year-old, dark-skinned, African-American woman who looks like me.”
While Davis didn’t take a blatant aim at the Hollywood establishment, it didn’t take a lot of reading between the lines to note where she was coming from with her speech.
Also present was Davis’ husband, who looked on approvingly.
Congrats to Viola Davis!