Viola Davis has said she regrets appearing in the film ‘The Help’, claiming she doesn’t feel her character was given enough of her own voice.
In 2011 movie, Viola starred as Aibileen Clark, the maid of a white family in the early 1960s.
However, reflecting on it now, the Oscar-winning star has admitted she’s no fan of the film, as she doesn’t feel the black characters were given enough autonomy in the story.
During a Q&A with the New York Times, Viola was asked whether she ever regretted saying no to a role, to which she responded: “Almost a better question is, have I ever done roles that I’ve regretted? I have, and ‘The Help’ is on that list.”
Viola went on to say that she values the “experience” of making the film and working with her co-stars, who she referred to as “extraordinary human beings”, as well as praising the film’s writer and director, Tate Taylor.
However, she added: “I just felt that at the end of the day that it wasn’t the voices of the maids that were heard. I know Aibileen. I know Minny. They’re my grandma. They’re my mom.
“And I know that if you do a movie where the whole premise is, ‘I want to know what it feels like to work for white people and to bring up children in 1963’, I want to hear how you really feel about it. I never heard that in the course of the movie.”
Her role in ‘The Help’ eventually bagged Viola her second Oscar nomination, while her co-stars Jessica Chastain and Octavia Spencer also received nods (of the three, it was Octavia who eventually took home the Oscar, for Best Supporting Actress).
Six years later, Viola finally bagged her first Academy Award for her role in Denzel Washington’s big-screen adaptation of ‘Fences’.