Viola Davis reveals her approach to acting.
Viola Davis received critical acclaim on screen for her acting on screen, to television, to the theater. Because of that acclaim, one may assume that acting comes easy to Davis, after all, she has all of the awards to prove it.
However, in a recent interview with NPR to promote her role in the movie Widows, Davis spoke about the challenges of performing, including how important collaboration is in acting.
Davis said, It takes a chunk out of your soul. It should. I think if its not costing you anything youre not doing it right. My job is to create a human being. My job is as an observer and a thief. That I look at life every day, people may be walking by someone every day on the train, on the streets, and not notice little details. As an artist, you notice everything. You notice how people look when theyre falling in love. You notice that little blink in someones eye when theyre thinking about what theyre going to eat. The time their parent died, to feeling like life is hopeless. And within two seconds because thats how we think as people. You notice those things. And what we do as artists is to create human beings so people can feel less alone. Thats what youre supposed to do.
Davis added, The audience is a part of the collaboration process. I cant be an actor in my room. I cant. I need the director, I need the script, all of those artists working to create the whole. But the other part that I need is the audience to come locked and loaded with all their thoughts, with all their memories, and to be able to look at the person that Im creating on the stage and see themselves. Not a fantasy of themselves, not an extension, but themselves. So thats what I do. Thats what sort of turns me on about what I do. And it is the most awesome way to feel empathy for another human being to literally sit with them and to see them in their mess and their beauty.