Emmys 2015: Viola Davis Makes History at the Emmy Awards

Viola Davis Emmys 2015 1

Viola Davis made history on Sunday night (Sept.20) at the 67th Primetime Emmy Awards by becoming the first African-American woman to win Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama for her role in How to Get Away With Murder.

The 50-year-old actress took the stage to accept the award by giving a powerful speech about diversity in Hollywood that left the audience in tears. Davis opened her speech by channeling Harriet Tubman, she said, “In my mind, I see a line. And over that line, I see green fields and lovely flowers and beautiful, white women with their arms stretched out to me over that line, but I can’t seem to get there no how. I can’t seem to get over that line.”

She continued by speaking on diversity.
“Let me tell you something, “she began.  “The only thing that separates women of color form anyone else is opportunity. You cannot win an Emmy for roles that are simply not there. So here’s to all the writers, the awesome people that are Ben Sherwood, Paul Lee, Peter Nowalk, Shonda Rhimes, people who have redefined what it means to be beautiful, to be sexy, to be a leading woman, to be black.
She concluded by calling out fellow actresses, including Taraji P. Henson, Kerry Washington, Halle Berry, and more to say “thank you for taking us over that line.”
Watch the Viola Davis Emmy Speech below!

(Photo Credit:  Mark Davis/Getty Images and Jason Merritt/Getty Images)