Tag Archives: PBS

Reacting to the Debate between Viola Davis, Octavia Spencer & Tavis Smiley

Viola Davis is remarkably eloquent on the complexities of the issues surrounding The Help:

 

Watch Actresses Viola Davis & Octavia Spencer on PBS. See more from Tavis Smiley.

 

That final point she makes about the psychic damage in black folks that is keeping us from doing our own shit and, if we do, causes us to create images that reinscribe racist beliefs about who we are is just beautiful stuff.

I also appreciate that Davis acknowledges that there really wasn't much to Aibileen after the book became a screenplay and that she will accept a critique of that. I think for an actress with so few options, that's incredibly generous. She would have every right to be as unconcerned with criticism as Octavia Spencer seems to be, but it's clear from this conversation that she's looked at this film, and the role she was asked to play, very deeply and from a variety of perspectives. 

And it's likely why her performance is so good.