Viola Davis Revealed Her Favorite Movie Role, And Chadwick Boseman Is Involved

Viola Davis and Chadwick Boseman in Get On Up
(Image credit: Universal Pictures)

Viola Davis has been a powerhouse of an actress for years. She blew The Academy and audiences by storm in her two scenes in Doubt, with three other Oscar nominations to follow from other projects like The Help, Fences (which she won), and Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom. She also starred in six seasons of How to Get Away with Murder where she became the first black actress to win Best Lead Actress at the 2015 Emmy Awards. Out of all of her best performances that made Viola Davis the actress she is today, which one is her favorite? Viola Davis reveals what her favorite movie role is and here’s a little hint: it involves Chadwick Boseman.

This Oscar and Emmy Award winner has worked with the late actor Chadwick Boseman on two projects- Get On Up and Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom. What’s Viola Davis’ favorite role? The answer is Get On Up where she played the mother of music icon James Brown. According to The Guardian, Viola Davis mentioned in her memoir Finding Me what made Get On Up her favorite role.

​​I enjoyed being in Mississippi. I loved Chadwick, loved Chadwick. It was sort of awesome.

Viola Davis and Chadwick Boseman had a very special relationship through the projects they worked on together. When Viola Davis worked with Chadwick Boseman in Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, she always called him her “baby” since they played a mother and son in Get On Up. Davis would go on to say that even though Chadwick Boseman lost his life at the age of 43, he was anything but tragic because of what he did with the time he had. The Widows actress also recalled that Boseman was a very spiritual man ,in that he would play his African drum for healing and carry it around with him everywhere he went. This shows what a phenomenal man he was in that despite his declining health, he still dedicated his time to connect with a Higher Power. 

From the biographical film Marshall to his final role in Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom, Chadwick Boseman kept himself busy with his work while privately battling colon cancer. His death came as quite a shock to fans and celebrities who worked with Boseman as his diagnosis was never revealed while he was alive. You would never know the wars he was facing with his health through the dedicated performances he gave audiences over the years. Boseman’s best performances included playing the Black Panther and playing real-life inspirations like Jackie Robertson, James Brown, and Thurgood Marshall. If not for his untimely death, he would still be touching audiences with his outstanding performances today with awards in both hands.

Viola Davis and other celebs continued to praise Chadwick Boseman in the Netflix documentary about his life called Chadwick Boseman: Portrait of an Artist. This Netflix special focuses on the impactful effect Chadwick Boseman brought to a movie set and his peers. Davis says in the documentary, “You know you have to step up when you’re in his presence.” Davis, I'm sure, must have been very honored and lucky to have gotten the chance to know her "baby" Chadwick Boseman with many memories she will cherish forever.

This Fences actress is far from done starring in biopics as her next project will be as Michelle Obama joining the cast of Showtime’s The First Lady. You can currently watch Chadwick Boseman's special, Get On Up, and Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom through your Netflix subscription

Carly Levy
Entertainment Writer

Just your average South Floridian cinephile who believes the pen is mightier than the sword.