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Black Lives Matter in the film industry, the complaints do not stop

A video of Viola Davis criticizing the film industry went viral recently.

Viola Davis

Actress Viola Davis stated that she has also experienced discrimination in the entertainment world. / Photo: Reuters

The Woman Post | Maria Lourdes Zimmermann

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Leer en español: Black Lives Matter en la industria del cine, las denuncias no paran

A 2018 video in which North American actress Viola Davis denounces discrimination based on racial and salary differences in the entertainment industry, went viral again on social media and is trending in the United States.

The video of an interview with the actress at the global event “Women in the World” two years ago shows the award-winning actress discussing the disturbing pay gap that occurs across gender and racial lines.

"I got the Oscar, I got the Emmy, I got both Tonys, I did Broadway, I ended up off Broadway, I made TV, I made movies, I did everything," Davis said.

"I have a career that is probably comparable to Meryl Streep, Julianne Moore, Sigourney Weaver," the actress recalled. "They all left Yale, they left Julliard, they left New York University. They had the same path as me, and yet I'm not close to them, money, or job opportunities, I am not anywhere close to them"

The testimony highlights the salary gap and the differences that exist between gender and race in an industry such as entertainment, an issue that today, the Black Lives Matter movement is making visible worldwide in order to generate changes against racism and global discrimination in all areas, political, economic, social, cultural, among others.

And Viola Davis' complaint is not the only one. Other Black Hollywood icons have openly spoken about their fight to be recognized for their celebrated bodies of work. Only months ago, Davis joined Mary J. Blige, Taraji P. Henson, Kimberly Elise, Halle Berry, Lynn Whitfield, and Angela Bassett in a conversation about being black women in the industry for T magazine. The discussion shed light on the stories of the entertainment world by highlighting certain black actresses as examples of diversity in a completely white space, while restricting their opportunities.

"What I see Hollywood doing is introducing one or two of us, and they'll ignore the rest of us like we don't exist," shared Kimberly Elise, star of The Diary of a Mad Black Woman. "It gives the illusion that we are making progress, but it is really weakening the collective."

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According to Biography.com, Viola Davis grew up in Rhode Island, where she began acting, first in high school and then at Rhode Island College. After attending the Juilliard School of Performing Arts, Davis made her Broadway debut in 1996 on Seven Guitars. She has won Tony Awards for her performances in King Hedley II (2001) and a revival of August Wilson 's Vallas (2010), which she co-starred with Denzel Washington. Her film work includes Doubt (2008), for which she received an Oscar nomination, The Help (2011), Ender's Game (2013), and Get on Up (2014) .In 2015, she became the first African-American woman to win an Emmy. Best Leading Actress in a Drama Series for her work on the television series How to Get Away with Murder. She reprised her role as Rose Maxson in the 2016 film adaptation of Fences, directed and co-starring Washington, for which she received an Academy Award for Best Supporting Actress in 2017.

According to digital media Refinery29, Viola Davis's net worth last year was approximately $ 12 million , a total that is devastatingly low compared to Meryl Streep's $ 150 million or Julianne Moore's $ 50 million. The disparity is a symptom of Hollywood's refusal to pay people of color (specifically black women) what they deserve, a problem that is also reflected in various industries. That is why today, her statements go viral in the global context of the fight against racism.

 

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