Oscar winning star speaks about ‘ground-breaking’ kiss with Liam Neeson
Oscar winning actress Viola Davis has described her new movie with Liam Neeson as ‘ground-breaking’.
The pair star in Steve McQueen’s crime thriller Widows and share a passionate kiss in the opening scene.
Davis says that for a 53-year-old black female lead to kiss a white actor and for their characters to be romantically involved is a rare sight in Hollywood.
She said: “For me, this is something you’ll not see this year, last year, the year before that.
“That is, a dark-skinned woman of colour, at 53-years-old, kissing Liam Neeson. Not just kissing a white man. Liam Neeson, a hunk. And kissing him sexually, romantically.”
Davis added that while audiences might not think of it as a particularly significant scene within the movie, it is a big deal for the industry as a whole.
She told the Guardian: “Nobody will pay attention to that. And if you mention it to someone, I think they’ll feel like it’s hip and it’s funky that they didn’t notice it. But will you see it again?
“If you don’t think that’s a big deal, then tell me, why isn’t it happening more? There’s a part of me that can answer that.”
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Part of reason that the Davis describes the scene as ‘momentous’ is that the races of each character is not significant to the story – they are just two people in a relationship.
She said: “He’s not my slave owner. I’m not a prostitute — so he’s not my john. And it’s not meant to make a political statement. It’s just meant to be.”
The role wasn’t specifically written for a black actor, but Davis says the character is more human and three-dimensional than many female roles.
She added: “If I had turned down the role in Widows, it would have gone to a white actor.”
The movie follows the fortunes of a group of female criminals as they attempt a heist after their husbands were killed in a job that went wrong.
Take a look at the trailer for Widows below.
Written by Michael Kehoe @michaelcalling
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