Davis at the 2016 San Diego Comic-Con
|Education||Rhode Island College (BA)|
Juilliard School (GrDip)
|Height||5 ft 5 in (165 cm)|
Viola Davis (born August 11, 1965) is an American actress and producer. Having won an Academy Award, a Primetime Emmy Award, and two Tony Awards, she is the first African-American to achieve the "Triple Crown of Acting". Time magazine named her one of the 100 most influential people in the world in 2012 and 2017. In 2017 she received a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. In 2020, The New York Times ranked Davis ninth on its list of "The 25 Greatest Actors of the 21st Century".
Born in St. Matthews, South Carolina, Davis began her acting career in Central Falls, Rhode Island, starring in minor theater productions. After graduating from the Juilliard School in 1993, she won an Obie Award in 1999 for her performance as Ruby McCollum in Everybody's Ruby. She played minor roles in several films and television series in the late 1990s and early 2000s, before winning the Tony Award for Best Featured Actress in a Play for her role as Tonya in the 2001 Broadway production of August Wilson's King Hedley II. Davis's film breakthrough came in 2008, when her role as a troubled mother in the film Doubt earned her a nomination for the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress.
Greater success came to Davis in the 2010s. She won the 2010 Tony Award for Best Actress in a Play for playing Rose Maxson in the Broadway revival of August Wilson's play Fences. For starring as a 1960s housemaid in the comedy-drama The Help (2011), Davis received a nomination for the Academy Award for Best Actress and won a Screen Actors Guild Award. In 2014, Davis began playing lawyer Annalise Keating in the ABC television drama series How to Get Away with Murder, and in 2015, she became the first Black woman to win the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series. In 2016, Davis reprised the role of Maxson in the film adaptation of Fences, winning the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress. She went on to receive a BAFTA nomination for her performance in Steve McQueen's heist film Widows (2018). In 2020, Davis garnered universal acclaim for her performance in the titular role of the film adaptation of Ma Rainey's Black Bottom.
Davis and her husband, Julius Tennon, are founders of a production company, JuVee Productions. Davis is also widely recognized for her advocacy and support of human rights and equal rights for women and women of color.
Early life and education
Viola Davis was born on August 11, 1965, in St. Matthews, South Carolina. She is the daughter of Mary Alice (née Logan) and Dan Davis. She was born on her grandmother's farm on the Singleton Plantation. Her father was a horse trainer, and her mother was a maid, factory worker and homemaker. She is the second youngest of six children, having four sisters and a brother. Two months after she was born, her family moved to Central Falls, Rhode Island, with Davis and two of her sisters, leaving her older sister and brother with her grandparents.
Her mother was also an activist during the Civil Rights Movement. At age two, Davis was taken to jail with her mother after she was arrested during a civil rights protest. She has described herself as having "lived in abject poverty and dysfunction" during her childhood, recalling living in "rat-infested and condemned" apartments. Davis is a second cousin of actor Mike Colter, known for portraying the Marvel Comics character Luke Cage.
Davis attended Central Falls High School, the alma mater to which she partially credits her love of stage acting with her involvement in the arts. As a teen, she was involved in the federal TRIO Upward Bound and TRIO Student Support Services programs. While enrolled at the Young People's School for the Performing Arts in West Warwick, Rhode Island, Davis's talent was recognized by a director at the program, Bernard Masterson.
After graduating from high school, Davis studied at Rhode Island College, majoring in theater and participating in the National Student Exchange before graduating in 1988. Next, she attended the Juilliard School for four years, and was a member of the school's Drama Division "Group 22" (1989–93).
1990s: Early work
In 1992, Davis starred in her first professional stage role, an off Broadway production of William Shakespeare's comedy As You Like It as Denis alongside Elizabeth McGovern at the Delacorte Theatre. In 1996, Davis made her Broadway debut in the original Broadway production of August Wilson's Seven Guitars as the Vera, alongside Keith David. The play opened on Broadway on March 6 at the Walter Kerr Theatre. She earned critical praise for her performance. That same year, Davis received her Screen Actors Guild card in 1996 for doing one day of work, playing a nurse who passes a vial of blood to future "How to Get Away with Murder" co-star Timothy Hutton in the film The Substance of Fire (1996). She was paid $528. Davis continued acting off Broadway in various productions, and appeared in bit parts on television including episodes of NYPD Blue (1996), and New York Undercover (1996). She also appeared in the HBO television military comedy film, The Pentagon Wars (1996) starring Kelsey Grammer, and Cary Elwes. In 1998, she played a small role in Steven Soderbergh's crime comedy film Out of Sight (1999).
In 2001, she returned to the Broadway stage in another play by August Wilson, titled King Hedley II where she portrayed Tonya in a "35-year-old mother fighting eloquently for the right to abort a pregnancy." Her performance earned critical attention, whereupon she received her first Tony Award for Best Featured Actress in a Play and a Drama Desk Award. She won another Drama Desk Award for her work in a 2004 off-Broadway production of Intimate Apparel by Lynn Nottage.
Throughout the early 2000s Davis appeared in numerous films, including Soderbergh's Solaris and Traffic, as well as George Clooney's Syriana (2005), which Soderbergh produced. Hers was the uncredited voice of the parole board interrogator who questions Danny Ocean (Clooney) in the first scene in Ocean's Eleven (2001). She also gave brief performances in the film such as the romantic comedy Kate & Leopold (2001) and the drama Antwone Fisher (2002). She also played secondary roles in Todd Haynes' costume drama Far From Heaven (2002), starring Julianne Moore and Dennis Quaid. Her television work includes a recurring role in Law & Order: Special Victims Unit, starring roles in two short-lived series, Traveler and Century City, and a special guest appearance in a Law & Order: Criminal Intent episode entitled "Badge".
In 2008, Davis played Mrs. Miller in the film adaptation of the Broadway play by John Patrick Shanley, Doubt, with Meryl Streep, Philip Seymour Hoffman. Though Davis had only one scene in the film, she remained a highlight of the film with noted film critic Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times specifically praising her performance writing, "It lasts about 10 minutes, but it is the emotional heart and soul of "Doubt," and if Viola Davis isn't nominated by the Academy, an injustice will have been done." Ebert would further go on to write, "She goes face to face with the pre-eminent film actress of this generation, and it is a confrontation of two equals that generates terrifying power." She was nominated for several awards for her performance, including a Screen Actors Guild Award, a Golden Globe Award and an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress.
In 2010, Davis returned to Broadway in her third August Wilson play, this time a revival of Fences as Rose Maxon, acting alongside Denzel Washington. Her performance received raves from critics in particular theatre critic Ben Brantley of The New York Times who described Davis' performance as "extraordinary", adding "Ms. Davis, who won a Tony for her performance in Wilson’s “King Hedley II,” may well pick up another for her work here. Her face is a poignant paradox, both bone-tired and suffused with sensual radiance." On June 13, 2010, Davis won her second Tony Award for her performance. She was the second African-American to win the Tony for Best Performance by a Leading Actress in a Play, after Phylicia Rashad.
In 2010 Davis had small roles in the romantic comedy thriller Knight and Day starring Tom Cruise and Cameron Diaz and the romantic comedy Eat Pray Love starring Julia Roberts. That same year she also played the role of Dr. Minerva in It's Kind of a Funny Story (2010), a coming-of-age film written and directed by Anna Boden with Ryan Fleck, adapted from the 2006 novel by Ned Vizzini.
In August 2011, Davis starred as Aibileen Clark, a housemaid in 1960s Mississippi, in the film adaptation of Kathryn Stockett's novel The Help, directed by Tate Taylor and co-starring Emma Stone, and Octavia Spencer. Davis described her performance in the film as channeling her mother and grandmother saying, "I feel like I brought my mom to life; I've channeled her spirit. I channeled the spirit of my grandmother, and I've kind of paid homage to how they've contributed to my life and the lives of so many people". She has since expressed deep regret over taking on the role; although she still admires the people she worked with, she does not think the story or portrayal is truthful about the lives of the black characters.
Davis garnered critical acclaim for her performance and eventually won two Screen Actors Guild Awards, in addition to receiving her second Academy Award nomination, which she ultimately lost to Meryl Streep. Davis received Golden Globe Award and BAFTA Award nominations for the same performance. In 2012, Time magazine listed Davis as one of the most influential people in the world. Also in 2012, Glamour magazine named Davis Glamour's Film Actress of the year.
On June 12, 2012, Davis was presented with the Women in Film's Crystal Award by her friend and Oscar rival that year, Meryl Streep. On June 25, 2012, the Walk of Fame Committee of the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce announced that Davis was part of the new group of entertainment professionals who have been selected to receive stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame in 2013. On January 5, 2017, Davis received the 2,597th star on the Walk of Fame.
Davis reunited with The Help director Tate Taylor in Get on Up, a biopic of James Brown, playing Brown's mother. Her 3-year-old daughter, Genesis also appeared in the movie. In February 2014, Davis was cast in Peter Nowalk's pilot How to Get Away with Murder (executive produced by Shonda Rhimes for her ShondaLand production company) as the lead character. Her character, Annalise Keating, is a tough criminal defense attorney and professor who becomes entangled in murder plot with her students. It began as a series in September 2014.
On September 20, 2015, Davis became the first African-American to win the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series for her role on How to Get Away with Murder. She received a second Primetime Emmy Award nomination for the role in 2016. Davis also won two Screen Actors Guild Awards for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Drama Series in 2014 and 2015. She received nominations from the Golden Globe Awards for Best Actress – Television Series Drama and Critics' Choice Award for Best Actress in a Drama Series for her performance on the show.
In 2015, Davis appeared in Blackhat, a Michael Mann-directed thriller film starring Chris Hemsworth. Davis also served as executive-producer of the crime drama film Lila & Eve, starring herself and Jennifer Lopez in the titular roles. In 2016, Davis starred in the courtroom drama Custody, on which she also served as an executive producer, and played Amanda Waller in the film Suicide Squad, an adaptation of a DC Comics series of the same name.
In 2016, Davis reprised her role as Rose Maxson for the film adaptation of Fences directed by and starring Denzel Washington. Her performance garnered critical acclaim and she received her third Academy Award nomination, making her the first black actress in history to achieve this feat. She subsequently went on to win the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress, the Golden Globe Award for Best Supporting Actress, the Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Female Actor in a Supporting Role, and the BAFTA Award for Best Actress in a Supporting Role.
On January 6, 2017, Davis was presented with the 2,597th star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame by her Doubt co-star and friend Meryl Streep. While accepting the honor, Davis said she could not believe her life: "It's like my life flashing before my eyes, and all I can say is, God has blessed my life in abundance." Davis was also listed among and a featured cover star of Time magazine's "100 Most Influential People" List for the second time, her first being in 2012. Streep penned the article in the magazine, referring to Davis as having "carved a place for herself on the Mount Rushmore of the 21st century", commenting that "her gifts as an artist are unassailable, undeniable, deep and rich and true. But her importance in the culture – her ability to identify it, her willingness to speak about it and take on responsibility for it – is what marks her for greatness." On January 30, it was announced that Davis would star alongside Julia Roberts in the film adaptation of Jodi Picoult's novel, Small Great Things. On March 4, Davis was awarded the Artist of the Year Award at Harvard University.
On January 22, Davis debuted Two-Sides, a documentary series exploring police brutality towards the African-American community. The series debuted on TV One, running through till mid-February. Davis also starred alongside fellow Shondaland costar Kerry Washington for a special two-hour crossover episode of How to Get Away with Murder and Scandal, aptly titled How to Get Away with Scandal. Davis's guest appearance garnered her a fourth Emmy Award nomination, and her first for Outstanding Guest Actress in a Drama Series.
Later that year, Davis starred in the Steve McQueen heist thriller Widows alongside Cynthia Erivo, Elizabeth Debicki, Michelle Rodriguez, and Liam Neeson. The film was an adaptation of the popular 1983 British miniseries. She received critical acclaim, with film critic Eric Kohn of IndieWire writing, that the film "largely belongs to Davis...the actress has never been more commanding". She received her second British Academy Film Award nomination for Best Actress in a Leading Role for her performance.
On October 10, 2017, Davis announced that she would write the sequel to the classic picture book Corduroy, titled Corduroy Takes a Bow. In a press release, Davis stated that "Corduroy has always held a special place in my life, first as a child paging through it, and then again with my daughter, introducing her to the adventures of that adorable teddy bear". On March 13, 2018, Davis shared the cover of the book on her Twitter account. The book was published by Penguin Random House on September 4, 2018.
In 2020, Davis served as an executive producer and appeared in the documentary film Giving Voice, following students entering the August Wilson monologue competition for a chance to compete on Broadway. The film had its world premiere at the Sundance Film Festival and will be released by Netflix. That same year, Davis starred in Ma Rainey's Black Bottom as the titular character based upon the play of the same name acting alongside the Chadwick Boseman in his final onscreen performance. The project was directed by George C. Wolfe for Netflix.
Davis will reprise her role as Amanda Waller in The Suicide Squad set for release in August 2021, She will also appear in an untitled drama film, directed by Nora Fingscheidt opposite Sandra Bullock for Netflix.
On March 1, 2018, Davis announced that she would star alongside Lupita Nyong'o in The Woman King, inspired by true events that took place within The Kingdom of Dahomey. The film will tell the story of Nanisca, the general of an all-female military unit, played by Davis, and her daughter Nawi, played by Nyong'o.
In February 2020, it was announced that Davis would play former First Lady Michelle Obama in a new one-hour drama series called First Ladies for Showtime, as well as serving as an executive producer.
Philanthropy and activism
In 2011, Davis donated funds to her hometown public library in Central Falls, Rhode Island, to assist in preventing its closure due to a lack of city funding. In 2018, Davis donated funds to her alma mater, Central Falls High School, for its theater program.
Since 2014, Davis has collaborated with the Hunger Is campaign to help eradicate childhood hunger across America. Speaking on her work, Davis said that "seventeen million kids in this country, so one in five kids in this country, go to bed hungry. I was one of those kids, because I grew up in abject poverty; I did everything that you could possibly imagine to get food: I rummaged in the garbage cans, I stole from the local store constantly." As an honoree at the 2014 Variety Power of Women luncheon, Davis further commented that "the thing that made me join...was the word 'eradicate', 'get rid of' - not by thirty-percent not by twenty-percent not by fifty-percent, but to do away [with it]. Because everyone should be a child, and should grow up and have a chance at the American dream". In September 2017, Davis started the $30K in 30 Days Project with Hunger Is, awarding a $1,000 grant to the Rhode Island Community food bank in her home state.
As part of her partnership with Vaseline to promote the Vaseline Healing Project, Davis attended the groundbreaking of a free community health center in Central Falls, Rhode Island in October 2016 that was sponsored by the project. The project provides dermatological care to help heal the skin of those affected by poverty around the world. She was also a speaker at the 2018 Women's March event in Los Angeles.
Acting credits and awards
According to Rotten Tomatoes and The Numbers, Davis's most commercially successful and critically acclaimed films include Traffic (2000), Doubt (2008), Law Abiding Citizen (2009), Knight and Day and Eat Pray Love (2010); The Help (2011), Suicide Squad and Fences (2016).
Throughout her career, Davis is a recipient of numerous industry and critics' awards. For her stage work, she has won two Tony Awards, three Drama Desk Awards, an Obie Award and Theater World Award. She holds the distinction of becoming the first actress of color to win a Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series and is the first African-American to win five Screen Actors Guild Awards.
She has been nominated for four Golden Globes Awards, two British Academy Film Awards winning one for each and by earning the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress honor for Fences, Davis became the first Black actor to achieve the Triple Crown of Acting: winning a competitive Oscar, Emmy and Tony in acting categories. She is one of only two Black actresses (the other being Octavia Spencer) to have received three Academy Award nominations. Davis was awarded an honorary doctorate in Fine Arts from her undergraduate alma mater, Rhode Island College, in 2002. On January 20, 2020, Davis was awarded an honorary doctoral degree in fine arts from Indiana University.
- "Viola Davis Biography: Theater Actress, Film Actress, Television Actress". Biography.com. Archived from the original on December 22, 2014. Retrieved September 21, 2015.
- "The 100 Most Influential People in the World: Viola Davis". Time. Archived from the original on April 20, 2017. Retrieved April 21, 2017.
- "The 100 Most Influential People in the World". Time. April 18, 2012. Archived from the original on April 22, 2012.
- "Viola Davis Just Got A Star On The Hollywood Walk Of Fame". The Huffington Post. Retrieved December 27, 2020.
- Dargis, Manohla; Scott, A. O. (November 25, 2020). "The 25 Greatest Actors of the 21st Century (So Far)". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved November 26, 2020.
- Boroff, Philip (June 14, 2010). "Denzel Washington, Viola Davis, 'Memphis,' Win Top Tony Awards". Bloomberg News. Archived from the original on May 7, 2013. Retrieved July 8, 2012.
- "SAG Awards 2012: Complete list of winners". New York Daily News. Associated Press. January 30, 2012. Archived from the original on February 1, 2012.
- "Emmy Awards 2015: The complete winners list". CNN. September 21, 2015. Archived from the original on September 22, 2015.
- "Viola Davis announces 'Fences' wrap: let the Oscar campaigns begin". Serving Cinema. June 14, 2016. Archived from the original on January 10, 2017. Retrieved January 9, 2017.
- "Viola Davis Wins First Golden Globe for 'Fences'". Variety. January 8, 2017. Archived from the original on January 9, 2017. Retrieved January 20, 2018.
- "Critics Choice Awards 2016: Viola Davis wins best supporting actress". Entertainment Weekly. December 12, 2016. Archived from the original on January 10, 2017. Retrieved January 9, 2017.
- "Inside Viola Davis's Swaggering Transformation Into Blues Icon Ma Rainey". Vanity Fair. Retrieved December 27, 2020.
- Carlin, Shannon (January 21, 2018). "Viola Davis Gave The Most Powerful Speech at the Women's March On Intersectional Feminism". Refinery29.com. Retrieved February 24, 2018.
- "Viola Davis Talks Growing Up Hungry, Poor and Ashamed". Black Enterprise. August 4, 2015. Archived from the original on October 30, 2016. Retrieved January 24, 2017.
- "Viola Davis' path from poverty in Central Falls to Hollywood glamour" Archived February 27, 2009, at the Wayback Machine Providence Journal, February 22, 2009.
- "Viola Davis recalls her grandmother's home on a former plantation with a 'horrific' past".
- "Veteran Actors, First Time Nominees". The Wall Street Journal. February 20, 2009. Archived from the original on November 9, 2012.
- Buckley, Michael (March 14, 2004). "Chats with Intimate Apparel's Viola Davis and New York Newcomer, King Lear's Geraint Wyn Davies". Playbill. Archived from the original on December 15, 2008. Retrieved July 14, 2013.
- "Viola Davis: "The Help" and "Daring Yourself to Dream Big" Archived October 4, 2011, at the Wayback Machine, Life Goes Strong, August 1, 2011.
- "Viola Davis | TV Guide". TVGuide.com. Retrieved November 1, 2019.
- The Tonight Show With Jay Leno, NBC Television, September 20, 2012
- "Viola Davis Tackles Fear, Shines In 'Doubt'", NPR, December 10, 2008.
- Gonzales, Erica (February 27, 2017). "Viola Davis Grew Up in Poverty and Rat-Infested Apartments—Now She Has an Oscar". Harper's Bazaar. Archived from the original on February 28, 2017. Retrieved February 27, 2017.
- Sharma, Nemisha (December 6, 2015). "'Luke Cage': 5 Cool Things You Didn't Know About Marvel/Netflix Star Mike Colter". Design & Trend. Archived from the original on July 27, 2016. Retrieved July 16, 2016.
- "Viola Davis". The A.V. Club. Archived from the original on January 10, 2010.
- "Viola Davis". TV Guide. Archived from the original on November 23, 2010.
- Brown, Gita, "Exclusive What’s News @ RIC interview: Viola Davis talks about her life and her new film", What's News, ric.edu, August 2, 2011.
- "Alumni News". Juilliard School. October 2011. Archived from the original on November 11, 2011.
- "Seven Guitars". Variety. Retrieved December 26, 2020.
- "THEATER REVIEW;Unrepentant, Defiant Blues For 7 Voices". The New York Times. Retrieved December 26, 2020.
- Moynihan, Rob (January 19, 2015). "How I Got My SAG-AFTRA Card", TV Guide, p. 8.
- "Truly, Madly, Intimately" Archived August 28, 2008, at the Wayback Machine, American Theatre magazine, September 2004.
- Stodghill, Alexis Garrett (December 23, 2011). "Viola Davis' top 10 performances: From 'Traffic' to 'The Help'". Grio. Archived from the original on July 5, 2012. Retrieved July 8, 2012.
- Shaw, Gabbi. "50 celebrities you forgot appeared on 'Law and Order: SVU'". INSIDER. Retrieved August 16, 2019.
- "Meghan Markle's movies and TV roles, in pictures". The Telegraph. November 28, 2017. ISSN 0307-1235. Retrieved August 16, 2019.
- Varley, Eddie. "DOUBT Star Viola Davis Visits THE VIEW 12/23". BroadwayWorld.com. Retrieved August 16, 2019.
- "Bless you, father, for you have sinned. Or maybe you haven't". Rogerebert.com. Retrieved December 26, 2020.
- Caro, Mark (February 14, 2009). "Viola Davis: The Pop Machine interview". Chicago Tribune. Archived from the original on October 18, 2015. Retrieved September 21, 2015.
- "Oscar nominations 2009: Amy Adams and Viola Davis discuss their roles in Doubt". The Daily Telegraph. January 22, 2009. Archived from the original on January 3, 2015. Retrieved July 8, 2012.
- "Academy Invites 134 to Membership". Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. June 30, 2009. Archived from the original on May 18, 2012. Retrieved July 8, 2012.
- "It's No More Mr. Nice Guy for This Everyman". The New York Times. Retrieved December 26, 2020.
- "Fences Stars Viola Davis & Denzel Washington Win 2010 Tony Awards". broadway.com. June 13, 2010. Archived from the original on August 21, 2012. Retrieved July 8, 2012.
- Sciretta, Peter (November 30, 2009). "Ryan Fleck's It's Kind of a Funny Story Begins Production". /Film. Archived from the original on June 12, 2010. Retrieved June 12, 2010.
- "Viola Davis On 'The Help': 'I've Brought My Mom To Life'". HuffPost. August 11, 2011. Archived from the original on April 3, 2017. Retrieved April 2, 2017.
- "Viola Davis 'betrayed' herself in The Help". BBC News. July 15, 2020. Retrieved August 31, 2020.
- Eggertsen, Chris (September 14, 2014). "Shocker: Oscar nominee Viola Davis is routinely offered 'mammy-ish' roles by Hollywood" Archived January 28, 2015, at the Wayback Machine. HitFix.
- "Viola Davis". Golden Globes. Retrieved March 16, 2018.
- "Viola Davis". BAFTA Awards database. Retrieved March 16, 2018.
- "TIME '100 Most Influential People': Kristen Wiig, Viola Davis And Other Actors Honored". moviefone. April 18, 2012. Archived from the original on April 22, 2012. Retrieved July 8, 2012.
- "Film Actress – Viola Davis". Glamour. May 29, 2012. Archived from the original on June 21, 2012. Retrieved July 8, 2012.
- "Meryl Streep-Viola Davis Love Fest at Women in Film Awards". showbiz. June 14, 2012. Archived from the original on June 18, 2012. Retrieved July 8, 2012.
- Gans, Andrew (June 25, 2012). "Viola Davis, Helen Mirren, Jane Lynch, Olympia Dukakis, Jennifer Hudson Are Hollywood Walk of Fame Recipients". Archived from the original on January 31, 2013. Retrieved July 8, 2012.
- Gettell, Oliver (January 5, 2017). "Viola Davis accepts star on Walk of Fame: 'I cannot believe my life'". Archived from the original on January 7, 2017. Retrieved January 20, 2018.
- "Tate Taylor Reunites With 'The Help's' Viola Davis, Octavia Spencer On James Brown Pic". Deadline. September 30, 2013. Archived from the original on October 24, 2013. Retrieved October 23, 2013.
- "Viola Davis – Viola Davis' Daughter To Make Acting Debut in James Brown Biopic". WENN. October 22, 2013. Archived from the original on October 29, 2013. Retrieved October 23, 2013.
- "Viola Davis to Star in ABC Drama 'How to Get Away With Murder'". The Hollywood Reporter. Archived from the original on May 21, 2014. Retrieved May 10, 2014.
- "Sneak Peek! See Viola Davis in Her New Drama How to Get Away With Murder". Us Weekly. Archived from the original on April 2, 2017. Retrieved April 1, 2017.
- "ABC Orders 'How to Get Away With Murder', 'Black-ish,' 'American Crime', 'Selfie', 'Galavant', More to Series". The Hollywood Reporter. Archived from the original on May 9, 2014. Retrieved April 2, 2017.
- "Viola Davis On 'How to Get Away with Murder'". Biography. Archived from the original on August 3, 2016. Retrieved April 2, 2017.
- Andreeva, Nellie (May 8, 2014). "ABC Picks Up Shonda Rhimes 'How To Get Away With Murder', John Ridley's 'American Crime', Comedy 'Black-ish' To Series". Deadline Hollywood. Archived from the original on May 9, 2014. Retrieved May 9, 2014.
- Nakamura, Reid. "Viola Davis and Taraji P. Henson Make Emmy History With 'How to Get Away With Murder', 'Empire' Roles". Archived from the original on September 5, 2015. Retrieved August 27, 2015.
- Rachel Handler. "Watch Viola Davis Explain Her Historic Emmys Speech to Ellen DeGeneres" Archived September 28, 2015, at the Wayback Machine, Time, September 24, 2015. Retrieved September 28, 2015
- Michael Gold. Viola Davis’s Emmy Speech Archived February 28, 2017, at the Wayback Machine. Awards Season. The 2015 Emmy Awards. New York Times, September 20, 2015. Retrieved September 28, 2015.
- Stephanie Merry, "Emmy Awards: ‘Game of Thrones’ beats ‘Mad Men’, Viola Davis becomes first African American to win best actress in drama, Jon Hamm finally wins best actor, ‘Veep’ sweeps" Archived September 28, 2015, at the Wayback Machine, Washington Post, September 20, 2015. Retrieved September 28, 2015.
- "Emmy Nominations 2016: Game of Thrones Rules Again". The New York Times. July 7, 2016. Archived from the original on July 17, 2016. Retrieved July 20, 2016.
- "Viola Davis SAG Award for Best Actress in a TV Drama". E!. Archived from the original on April 3, 2017. Retrieved April 2, 2017.
- "Viola Davis Nominated for Golden Globe, SAG & NAACP Awards | How to Get Away with Murder". ABC. Archived from the original on April 3, 2017. Retrieved April 2, 2017.
- "Viola Davis in Talks To Star in Michael Mann's Cyber Crime Pic". Deadline. April 19, 2013. Archived from the original on May 27, 2013. Retrieved July 5, 2013.
- Debruge, Peter (January 31, 2015). "Sundance Film Review: 'Lila and Eve'". Variety. Retrieved March 4, 2018.
- McNary, Dave (April 30, 2015). "Hayden Panettiere, Ellen Burstyn Join Viola Davis in 'Custody'". Variety. Archived from the original on May 18, 2015. Retrieved May 15, 2015.
- "EXCLUSIVE: Viola Davis Bags Amanda Waller Role In 'Suicide Squad'". Latino Review. December 16, 2014. Archived from the original on December 17, 2014.
- Willis, Jackie (January 24, 2017). "VViola Davis Becomes First Black Actress to Earn 3 Oscar Nominations". Entertainment Tonight. Retrieved March 4, 2018.
- Workneh, Lilly (January 30, 2017). "Viola Davis Wins SAG Award, Thanks 'Fences' Author For Elevating Black Narrative". The Huffington Post. Retrieved March 4, 2018.
- Tristram Fane Saunders (February 13, 2017). "Bafta winners 2017, full list: victory for La La Land and I, Daniel Blake". The Daily Telegraph. Archived from the original on February 15, 2017. Retrieved February 27, 2017.
- Easter, Makeda (January 6, 2017). "'I cannot believe my life right now': Viola Davis gets her star on the Walk of Fame". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved March 4, 2018.
- Schnurr, Samantha (April 20, 2017). "Viola Davis, John Legend, Riz Ahmed and More Stars Land Covers for Time's 100 Most Influential People of 2017". E!. Retrieved March 4, 2018.
- Delbyck, Cole (April 20, 2017). "Viola Davis, James Corden And Emma Stone Make Time's 100 Most Influential People List". The Huffington Post. Retrieved March 4, 2018.
- McNary, Dave (January 30, 2017). "Viola Davis, Julia Roberts to Star in Drama 'Small Great Things'". Variety. Retrieved March 4, 2018.
- Bonn, Tess (March 6, 2017). "See Viola Davis' Powerful Harvard Award Acceptance Speech". Rolling Stone. Retrieved March 4, 2018.
- Muhammad, Latifah (January 28, 2018). "'Two Sides': Viola Davis Debuts Documentary Series On Police Brutality". Vibe. Retrieved March 4, 2018.
- "Performer of the Week: Viola Davis". TV Line. March 3, 2018. Retrieved March 4, 2018.
- "'Widows' Review: Steve McQueen's Riveting Heist Movie Is 'Ocean's Eight' With a Dragon Tattoo". IndieWire. Retrieved December 26, 2020.
- M Smith, Nigel (September 26, 2016). "Viola Davis to star in Steve McQueen's heist thriller Widows". The Guardian. Retrieved March 4, 2018.
- Jack Guy. "Viola Davis stars in Vanity Fair's first cover shot by a Black photographer". CNN. Retrieved July 21, 2020.
- Lee, Jarry (October 10, 2017). "Viola Davis Is Writing A Sequel To Classic Picture Book "Corduroy"". Buzzfeed. Retrieved March 4, 2018.
- Gillette, Sam (March 14, 2018). "Viola Davis Writes Sequel to Kids' Classic Corduroy: How African-American Character Inspired Her". People. Retrieved March 13, 2018.
- Greene, David. "Viola Davis Brings A New 'Corduroy' Book To Bear". NPR. Retrieved November 2, 2020.
- Siegel, Tatiana (December 4, 2019). "Sundance Unveils Female-Powered Lineup Featuring Taylor Swift, Gloria Steinem, Abortion Road Trip Drama". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved June 18, 2020.
- N'Duka, Amanda (June 18, 2020). "Netflix Picks Up Sundance Award Winning Docu 'Giving Voice'". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved June 18, 2020.
- Galuppo, Mia (June 19, 2019). "Viola Davis, Chadwick Boseman Set for August Wilson Adaptation 'Ma Rainey's Black Bottom'". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved June 18, 2020.
- Trumbore, Dave (April 5, 2019). "'Suicide Squad' Reboot to Star Viola Davis, Returning as Amanda Waller". Collider. Retrieved June 19, 2020.
- N'Duka, Amanda (December 16, 2019). "Viola Davis & More Join Sandra Bullock Netflix Drama". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved February 1, 2020.
- Kroll, Justin (March 1, 2018). "TriStar Acquires 'The Woman King' Starring Viola Davis and Lupita Nyong'o". Variety. Retrieved March 4, 2018.
- Hipes, Patrick (March 1, 2018). "'The Woman King' Starring Viola Davis & Lupita Nyong'o Lives To Fight at TriStar". Deadline. Retrieved March 4, 2018.
- Rahmanan, Anna Ben Yehuda (February 6, 2020). "Viola Davis To Play Michelle Obama In New 'First Ladies' Showtime Series". Forbes. Retrieved January 17, 2021.
- "The Help! Viola Davis Donates Money To Library in Hometown". NewsOne. November 22, 2011. Retrieved March 5, 2018.
- "Viola Davis donates to CF High theater program". American News. January 31, 2018. Retrieved March 5, 2018.
- Arditi, Lynn (October 8, 2016). "Viola Davis returns to hometown for Central Falls health center groundbreaking". The Providence Journal. Archived from the original on January 13, 2017. Retrieved January 12, 2017.
Davis has been one of the city's most high-profile boosters, raising and donating money for the city's Adams Memorial Library, the Central Falls High School chess team and drama club, and the Segue Institute for Learning, a charter school.
- Miller, G. Wayne (May 14, 2016). "Deloris Davis Grant tells RIC grads: 'be a rock star' + videos". The Providence Journal. Archived from the original on January 13, 2017. Retrieved January 12, 2017.
Deloris Davis Grant (sister of actress Viola Davis) teaches English and drama at Central Falls High School
- Lambe, Stacy (October 5, 2017). "Viola Davis Partners With Hunger Is Foundation to Deliver 30 Grants in 30 Days (Exclusive)". Entertainment Tonight. Retrieved March 4, 2018.
- on YouTube
- on YouTube
- Finney, Ali (October 20, 2016). "Viola Davis on What It Means to Be Your Authentic Self". Women's Health. Retrieved March 4, 2018.
- on YouTube
- Lee, Lauren (October 28, 2016). "Viola Davis takes on poverty in hometown". CNN. Retrieved March 5, 2018.
- Izadi, Elahe (January 21, 2018). "Women's March: Read stirring speeches from Viola Davis, Natalie Portman and other Hollywood stars". The Washington Post. Archived from the original on February 23, 2018. Retrieved February 12, 2020.
- Johnson, Zach (July 29, 2015). "Viola Davis Poses With Daughter Genesis Tennon for AARP the Magazine and Reflects on Her Life Before Turning 50". E!. Archived from the original on September 21, 2015. Retrieved September 21, 2015.
- Nahas, Aili; Raftery, Elizabeth (October 18, 2011). "Viola Davis Adopts a Daughter, Genesis". People. Archived from the original on October 14, 2014. Retrieved September 21, 2015.
- Marikar, Sheila (December 12, 2015). "Los Angeles Churches Make Worship...Hip?". The New York Times. Archived from the original on May 18, 2016.
- "Oscars 2017 updates: What really happened backstage at the Academy Awards". Archived from the original on March 10, 2017 – via LA Times.
- "Viola Davis - Box Office". The Numbers. Retrieved May 26, 2018.
- "Viola Davis". www.rottentomatoes.com. Retrieved May 26, 2018.
- Karen Mizoguchi. "SAG Awards 2017: Viola Davis Becomes First African American Actress to Score 5 Wins". People. Archived from the original on January 30, 2017. Retrieved February 1, 2017.
- Zak, Dan. "Only 22 people had ever accomplished this feat. Now, Viola Davis joins the club". The Washington Post. Archived from the original on March 1, 2017. Retrieved March 1, 2017.
- Nolfi, Joey (January 23, 2018). "Oscars: Octavia Spencer makes history with The Shape of Water nomination". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved January 23, 2018.
- RIC to Award 1,300 Degrees at Commencement Exercises Archived November 16, 2006, at the Wayback Machine, from the website of Rhode Island College.
- Miller, Kyra (January 19, 2020). "Viola Davis receives honorary doctorate of fine arts from IU during keynote lecture". Indiana Daily Student. Retrieved January 20, 2020.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Viola Davis.|
|Wikiquote has quotations related to: Viola Davis|