As critics and viewers anticipated, Viola Davis took home an Oscar for best supporting actress for her role as Rose Maxson in the film “Fences” and of course the acceptance speech that went along with it didn’t leave many dry eyes in the house.
The speech was so moving, host Jimmy Kimmel took the stage afterword and said he felt bad for anyone who has to give a speech after that performance, joking that because of the speech she was already nominated for an Emmy.
Davis gave a nod to Denzel Washington, August Wilson, her family and faith in a speech that lasted for slightly longer than three minutes.
She began by expressing gratitude for her roles and being able to tell stories through her work saying, “I became an artist and thank God I did because we are the only profession that celebrates what it means to live a life” and share the stories of “everyday” people and even “exhume” some from the past, like August Wilson’s “Fences” characters, who were all based on an average African-American family and their personal life struggles.
Davis turned to Denzel Washington, the director of the film and male lead in the movie, and emotionally thanked him for “putting two entities in the driving seat, August (Wilson) and God, and they served you well.”
“And to Danny and Mary Alice Davis who were and are the center of my Universe. The people who taught me good and bad, how to fail, how to love, how to hold an award, how to lose, my parents, I am so thankful that God chose you to bring me into this world.”
While the speech received praise, the internet can never be fully happy.
Some are criticizing her for being “self-indulgent” and expressed particular disdain over the claim that Hollywood is the “only” profession that celebrates what it means to live.
— Anita Rebecca (@Ms_LilShadow) February 27, 2017
When was the last time she was in a great Church? https://t.co/dm5SwLnuGj
— Lindsay Willis (@LindsayWillisMN) February 27, 2017
With that one line aside, the rest of the speech has been widely praised.
Earlier this year she became the first African-American woman to be nominated for three awards. She was previously nominated for her roles in “The Help” (2011) and “Doubt” (2008), ABC News reported.
My family. Thank you everyone for your love and support! pic.twitter.com/5thsM7y3HT
— Viola Davis (@violadavis) February 27, 2017
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