Viola Davis Slays Vanity Fair’s First Cover Shot By A Black Photographer

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Viola Davis looks incredibly divine as she stars on the July/August 2020 issue of Vanity Fair. The magazine also celebrates its first cover shot by a Black photographer, Dario Calmese who lensed the Oscar winning actress in this powerful  shoot.

Davis who’s set to star as Michelle Obama and blues legend Ma Rainey talks to Sonia Saraiya about her extraordinary journey out of poverty and into the deeply troubling Hollywood system. 

 

“Not a lot of narratives are also invested in our humanity,” says Davis while opening up about championing Black stories and her journey to Hollywood.

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“They’re invested in the idea of what it means to be Black, but…it’s catering to the white audience. The white audience at the most can sit and get an academic lesson into how we are. Then they leave the movie theater and they talk about what it meant. They’re not moved by who we were.”

On being actively involved the racial injustice protests, she says: “My entire life has been a protest. My production company is my protest. Me not wearing a wig at the Oscars in 2012 was my protest. It is a part of my voice, just like introducing myself to you and saying, ‘Hello, my name is Viola Davis.’”

In 2015, Davis became the first Black woman ever to win an Emmy for lead actress in a drama for ‘How to Get Away With Murder.’ In 2017, she won an Oscar for her supporting role as Rose Maxson in ‘Fences’—a part for which she also collected a Tony.

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