Wednesday 26 October 2016

Emmy-winner Viola Davis does not want to be 'put in a box'

Published 24/10/2015 | 07:11

Emmy-winner Viola Davis said that she does not want to be
Emmy-winner Viola Davis said that she does not want to be "put in a box" as an actor

Emmy-winner Viola Davis said that she does not want to be "put in a box" as an actor.

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The How To Get Away With Murder actress made history earlier this year as the first African American woman to win an Emmy for best actress for her role in the drama series, but she said she enjoyed not feeling constrained by her character, Annalise Keating, on the show.

Asked how much of the real Keating audiences has seen, she said: " Oh, there's so much more. I don't know how much I've seen of myself and I'm living with myself. You know, depending on the situation I'm in, depending on how scared I am or how insecure I feel at any given moment, I see another side of myself revealed and that's what you see with Annalise.

"I'm one of those actors: I don't want structure, I don't want to be put in a box, I don't know how many years we're going to be doing this show but I kind of want something that's looser. I think she's an endless bowl of surprises."

Davis returns as Keating in the second series, a ruthless criminal defence lawyer and professor at a prestigious Philadelphia university who becomes entwined in a murder plot along with five of her students.

The 50-year-old said that she comes into her own as an actress when she is allowed to play characters as complex as Keating.

"I t's what I do. That's what I feel, like I can do what I do. Whereas if someone just gives me four adjectives to play: warm, funny, likeable, then I just feel like every choice I make has to fit into those little cubes and if they don't then I'm doing something wrong.

"I don't think that's how we operate as human beings. I think we are everything that's messy and ugly and beautiful and likeable and unlikeable at the same time," she added.

"Messy" is an appropriate adjective for the situation that the characters find themselves in at the end of series one: no sooner is one murder is solved, another body turns up. But Davis will not allow herself to be drawn into giving away any spoilers.

"I will say this, it starts off with a bang. As soon as I feel like I don't know where the writers are going to go from here, they go some place that is so exciting and intriguing and, even if it's something that people may not believe, I tell you as an actor, it's awfully fun to play," she said.

Season two of How To Get Away With Murder begins on Universal Channel on October 28 at 9pm. Season One is now available on Netflix.

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