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Viola Davis received the 2001 Antoinette Perry (Tony) Award for Best Featured Actress in a Play for her performance as Tonya in August Wilson's "King Hedley II." The performance also garnered her Drama Desk and Outer Critics Circle Awards. She had previously been nominated for Tony and Drama Desk Awards for her performance as Vera in August Wilson's "Seven Guitars," which brought her an Outer Critics Circle Award as well as a Theatre World Award for Outstanding Broadway Debut.
Her stage credits also include the title role in "Everybody's Ruby" (at New York's Public Theatre, for which she received an Obie Award and a Drama Desk Award nomination); New York Shakespeare Festival productions of "Pericles," and "As You Like It"; "God's Heart" (at New York's Lincoln Center); and August Wilson's "Joe Turner's Come and Gone."
Davis has performed with, among other theater companies: American Conservatory Theatre, Sundance Theatre Institute, and Trinity Repertory Company. She has performed around the country at, among other theaters: The Goodman, The Guthrie, and The Huntington.
Her screen credits include three films directed by Far from Heaven executive producer Steven Soderbergh: the Academy Award-winning Traffic, Out of Sight, and the upcoming Solaris; James Mangold's Kate & Leopold; Richard Benjamin's The Shrink is In; Daniel Sullivan's The Substance of Fire; and the soon-to-be-released Antwone Fisher, directed by Denzel Washington.
Davis' television work includes a regular role on the Steven Bochco-produced series City of Angels; the "Oprah Winfrey Presents" telefilm Amy & Isabelle (directed by Lloyd Kramer); the "Hallmark Hall of Fame" telefilm Grace and Glorie (directed by Arthur Allan Seidelman); Richard Benjamin's telefilm The Pentagon Wars; and guest appearances on The Guardian, Judging Amy, Third Watch, Providence, NYPD Blue, and Law and Order: Criminal Intent.
She is a graduate of The Juilliard School and recently received an Honorary Doctorate of Fine Arts Degree from her alma mater, Rhode Island College.