2015 has been an awesome year for black actors.
And the hits keep on coming as actress Viola Davis made history last night as the first Black woman to win the Emmy Award for Best Lead Actress in a Drama Series for her role as a defense lawyer on ABC’s “How to Get Away With Murder”.
In her riveting speech Viola Davis thanked Kerry Washington, Taraji P. Henson, Gabrielle Union, Halle Berry, Nicole Beharie, and Meagan Goode for continuing to push Black actresses forward.
Other Emmy winners include Regina King for Best Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or a Movie for her role in ‘American Crime”, Uzo Aduba of “Orange Is the New Black” for Best Actress in a Drama Series and “Bessie” starring Queen Latifah for Outstanding Television Movie.
Viola Davis’ full acceptance speech below:
‘In my mind, I see a line. And over that line, I see green fields and lovely flowers and beautiful white women with their arms stretched out to me, over that line. But I can’t seem to get there no how. I can’t seem to get over that line.’
That was Harriet Tubman in the 1800s. And let me tell you something: The only thing that separates women of color from anyone else is opportunity.
You cannot win an Emmy for roles that are simply not there. So here’s to all the writers, the awesome people that are Ben Sherwood, Paul Lee, Peter Nowalk, Shonda Rhimes, people who have redefined what it means to be beautiful, to be sexy, to be a leading woman, to be black.
And to the Taraji P. Hensons, the Kerry Washingtons, the Halle Berrys, the Nicole Beharies, the Meagan Goods, to Gabrielle Union: Thank you for taking us over that line. Thank you to the Television Academy.