Viola Davis is on a roll. Not only did she take home the Critics’ Choice Award for Best Supporting Actress for her role as Rose Maxson in Fences, she also won the first ever Critics’ Choice #SeeHer award for her work portraying three-dimensional women on screen – most especially her role as Annalise Keating on How To Get Away With Murder. Davis received a standing ovation and gave a powerful acceptance speech:
“Thank you. It’s hard to accept being a role model for women when you’re trying to lose weight. But, I’ve always discovered the heart of my characters, I guess, by asking: why? You know, when I was handed Annalise Keating I said, she’s sexy, she’s mysterious, you know, I’m used to playing women who gotta gain 40 pounds and wear an apron so I said oh god, I gotta lose weight. I gotta learn to walk like Kerry Washington in heels. You know? I gotta lose my belly. And then I ask myself, well, why do I have to do all of that? I truly believe that the privilege of a lifetime is being who you are. And, I just recently embraced that at 51. I think my strongest power is that at 10 o’clock every Thursday night, I want you to come into my world. I’m not going to come into yours. You come into my world and you sit with me. My size. My hue. My age. And you sit. And you experience. And I think that’s the only power I have an artist so I thank you for this award and I do see her. Just like I see me.”
There are plenty of chances for Davis to take home some more trophies as awards season continues. Her performance in Fences has brought nominations from the Golden Globes and the SAG Awards (and she’ll probably get an Oscar nomination as well). She’s also been nominated for a People’s Choice Award for Favorite Dramatic TV Actress for her role as Annalise on HTGAWM. I certainly know who I’m voting for!