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I’ve had to sink my teeth into a role that was probably a fried-chicken dinner and make it into a filet mignon.

               Happy Birthday Queen Viola Davis! (11 August 1965)

telegraph.co.uk
Viola Davis reveals she has 'a lot of issues' with her 2011 civil rights drama The Help
Viola Davis has spoken out about problems she had with The Help, the Civil Rights drama that won her an Oscar nomination in 2012, criticising the decision to sanitise the pain of the era in which it was set by leaving many of the film's tougher, more dramatic scenes on the cutting room floor.

Extremely important to read and consider, especially as The Help was so highly regarded as a progressive landmark in Hollywood for African-American women - though not necessarily by them.

“I absolutely love the premise,” she said. “I love the fact that [Emma Stone’s character] said ‘I am going to write a story from the maids’ perspective of what it feels like to work with these white women’. Operative term meaning the maids’ perspective. I don’t feel like it was from our perspective, that’s the problem I had with it. I had it from the very beginning.

While she criticised aspects of the film she felt to be historically inaccurate (including the maids rejecting money for their stories, despite the film depicting them struggling to find scraps for food), she mostly condemned the sanitising of pain in order to make the film more palatable to mainstream audiences.

“The anger, the vitriol, and the hatred that they would have towards these white women if they were asked, if they were put in a situation where they were isolated, would have been vocalised. You didn’t see none of that!”

4

She’s Absolutely Right….