Until recently, Viola Davis had been television’s best kept secret. She brought conviction to roles on shows such as City of Angels (2000), Century City (2004), and Law & Order: Special Victims Unit (2003-2008). Here are eight facts that you might not know about this shinning artist.
1. She went to Juilliard.
Viola Davis grew up in Rhode Island in a poor neighborhood. But, she didn’t let that stop her. She worked hard and eventually was admitted in the legendary Juilliard School of Performing Arts in New York City. The school has produced some of America’s most incomparable talents like vocalist Pat Benatar (Hit Me With Your Best Shot), actor Ving Rhames (Pulp Fiction), and actress Rutina Wesley (True Blood). Davis obtained her degree in theater there in 1988. She then went on to Broadway where she won her first Tony award in 2001 for her role in August Wilson’s King Hedley II.
2. She’s stayed the night at George Clooney’s house…after she was married.
I guess I would do the exact same thing if George Clooney lent me his villa in Italy for my honeymoon. I mean, talk about using your connections wisely. In 2003, after the Oscar winner said her vows, she called in a favor from Clooney and spent her honeymoon in the actor’s 22 room Lake Como Villa.
3. She was married for nearly a decade without having a child.
Many celebrities get married and have children within a few years. Davis married in 2003 but did not have a child until 2011.
4. She is the 4th of 6 children.
The Help star is definitely no stranger to chaos or noise. She was surrounded by her 5 siblings as a middle child for a great part of her life.
5. She makes love connections…for her 3-year old daughter.
6. She’s won several awards before her streak of blockbusters came about.
In 2002, Davis was listed as one of the Top 100 Most Influential People in the World.
7. She is one of two Black actresses to be nominated for an Academy Award in more than one category.
Along with The View talk show host Whoopi Goldberg, Davis was nominated for an Academy Award in two specific categories: Best Actress and Best Supporting Actress.
8. Even as a child of circumstance, she always knew her potential.
Growing up in poverty, she would often write screenplays to escape the troubles of her life.