We are proud to announce that the recipient of the highly coveted John Schlesinger Britannia Award for Excellence in Directing will be Steve McQueen. And we are further delighted to announce that the award will be presented by the amazing Viola Davis! #Britannias pic.twitter.com/0MLy9wfhBd
— BAFTA Los Angeles (@BAFTALA) August 16, 2018
Okay how cute is Octavia! She talks about being up against Viola for the Oscar during her interview with Jimmy Fallon.
People did this awesome article about how Viola & Denzel met and how they built a friendship.
Denzel Washington doesn’t remember exactly when he met Viola Davis — but she does. It was 21 years ago when Davis was starring in the 1996 Broadway production of August Wilson’s play Seven Guitars.
“He came [backstage] and I was like, ‘Oh my God, I met Denzel Washington!’” Davis recalls to PEOPLE alongside her Fences costar and fellow Oscar nominee. The two became better acquainted years later when Washington, 62, cast Davis, 51, in his 2002 directorial debut, Antwone Fisher.
“I remember you were at the Trump Towers [in New York City] holding the auditions,” Davis says to Washington.
“I tell you what, it was a short audition process after that,” Washington remembers. “I’m not just saying that because you’re sitting here. [I thought] ‘I know there’s other folks sitting out there, I guess we’ll have a look at them because I don’t want them to feel bad.’ “
Their work together on Antwone Fisher was the official start of a very happy working relationship, although the two didn’t cross paths again until they began work on the 2010 Broadway production of Fences. The play, about a troubled 1950s family, won three Tony awards including best revival of a play and best actor and best actress for Washington and Davis.
Both actors agree that one of the main reasons they agreed to do the film version of Fences was the opportunity to work together again, along with several of the other original actors from the play.
“You miss these actors,” says Davis. “Usually I hate being the only girl because I feel like I’m so shy and awkward, I don’t like being around a lot of male energy.”
“Look at her, as she pulls her coat closed,” laughs Washington, watching Davis. “That’s interesting.”
“I know but I just loved being around all of [them],” she adds. “They’re just great, great men. To me Denzel is familiar, he’s easy. It’s like I know him. It’s like, ‘That’s Denzel.’ I feel that it’s always been that way. He, his wife, his kids, and at the same time, I’m a fan. I don’t like telling him that but I’m a fan. But I think he always makes interesting choices, I think it’s always rooted in truth and humanity and I think he has a lot of courage, he’s not a wimp and I like that. I think it takes a lot of courage to be an artist and to really go for it with your ideas, he has all that.”
“And thank you, goodnight,” laughs Washington at the compliments. “And, scene!”
So how does Washington feel about Davis?
“I just like Viola,” he says. “Viola is a great actor, I love working with her and I love watching her. I love being a part of it. It’s interesting working with her because we’ve worked together twice, but in both those cases other than the play I directed her, but not really directed her. When we did Antwone Fisher, because we’re actors, I recognize one when I see one. I know how I am and I could see she wanted to be left alone [during filming], she was in the zone, so I knew what to do. Just leave her alone and just watch.”
I don’t want to just say a cliché answer, she’s good and I love her,” he adds. “She’s a sweet lady and she’s talented and here we are.”
Viola’s co-star and friend Denzel Washington speaks about Viola during his interview on the Graham Norton Show.
Viola’s co-stars Aja Naomi King, Alfred Enoch and Karla Souza did an interview this week with Access Hollywood and spoke about Viola’s Emmys win and the new season of How to Get Away with Murder.
Tom Verica who portrays Sam Keating on How To Get Away With Murder (along with as a producer and director on Scandal) spoke with Vulture about playing opposite of Viola and how that is what drew him to going in front of the camera for this part.
Your main job was, and is, serving as a director/producer on Scandal. How did you end up back in front of the camera?
Last spring, as they were prepping the pilot for How to Get Away With Murder, I was prepping the finale for Scandal. The casting director called me up to feel me out and let me know what [the part] was. I hadn’t read the script, but I said, “Look, if it’s to play Viola Davis’s husband, I’d be very attracted to that.” But I didn’t know if I’d be able to do it because of [the Scandal finale]. The next thing I know, a couple hours later, Shonda comes into my office and says, “I want you to play this part. I have you in mind for it, and if we can make it work, I’d like you do it.” And when your boss asks you to do something, you kind of have to do it. It was a scheduling nightmare, but to get to flex my acting muscles opposite Ms. Davis? I didn’t see many downsides to it.
You mentioned before that the chance to work with Viola Davis was a key reason to take the role on Murder. What’s it been like so far?
It was a bit intimidating initially. She’s such a powerhouse. She has so much strength in her performance. It’s kind of like a tennis partner — you want to stay up with her, and as she’s giving it to you, you want to hit it back. As soon as you get into a scene, you strip away that outside knowledge and experience of who an actor is and what they’ve done before … you have to be present in that moment. Who she is and what’s she’s done has to go out the window. You have to commit to this relationship and who she is with me in that moment. But I’m so impressed and blown away with how dialed in she is to the character. She just elevates everything. I don’t think there’s any other character like hers on television.
To read the entire interview go here.