Image Credit: Disney
Forgot password
Enter the email address you used when you joined and we'll send you instructions to reset your password.
If you used Apple or Google to create your account, this process will create a password for your existing account.
This site is protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.
Reset password instructions sent. If you have an account with us, you will receive an email within a few minutes.
Something went wrong. Try again or contact support if the problem persists.
Image via ABC

Viola Davis reveals a director she’d known for a decade called her by his maid’s name

Should we assume that the maid was Black?
This article is over 2 years old and may contain outdated information

Viola Davis revealed a disheartening — and possibly racist — snafu made about her name by a director she’d known for a decade.

Recommended Videos

The star of the upcoming epic The Woman King was taking part in a Women In Motion conversation at Cannes Film Festival when she disclosed this anecdote, which was transcribed by Variety:

“I had a director who did that to me. He said, ‘Louise!’ I knew him for 10 years and he called me Louise and I find out that it’s because his maid’s name is Louise.”

Although that was around 26 years ago, the potentially-racialized mistake stuck with Davis as one of “those micro-aggressions [that] happen all the time.”

Davis, who was the first Black actress to win an Emmy for lead acting in a drama series, went on to note that dark-skinned actors can have fewer — or less glamorous — opportunities compared to lighter-skinned actors, even of the same race. “I know that when I left How to Get Away With Murder that I don’t see a lot of dark skin women in lead roles on TV and not even in streaming services. And that ties into ideology and ethos and mentality. . .”

Being a titan of the industry may not help, either:

“If I wanted to play a mother whose family lives in a low income neighborhood and my son was a gang member who died in a drive by shooting, I could get that made. If I played a woman who was looking to recreate herself by flying to Nice and sleeping with five men at the age of 56 — looking like me, I’m going to have a hard time pushing that one, even as Viola Davis.”

“Let’s be honest,” she continued. “If I had my same features and I were five shades lighter, it would just be a little bit different.”

Check out Davis in hopefully a less-stereotypical role in The Woman King, set for release on Sept. 16.

We Got This Covered is supported by our audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn a small affiliate commission. Learn more about our Affiliate Policy