‘How to Get Away with Murder’ star Viola Davis on Oscar controversy, ‘Problem is not With the Oscars’

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“How to Get Away with Murder” star Viola Davis has spoken-up about the diversity in the Academy Awards nominations. According to the 50-year-old actress, the “problem is not with the Oscars” but with the Hollywood movie-making system.”

Davis will not be attending the Oscars in February but she is not boycotting it either. She will be absent not because of recent Oscar nomination controversy related to the all white nominations but because she is going to be on a vacation when the ceremony takes place. However, the actress, who is a two-time Oscar nominee, expressed her opinion about the recent Oscar controversy.

“How many black films are being produced every year? How are they being distributed? The films that are being made, are the big-time producers thinking outside of the box in terms of how to cast the role?” she told Entertainment Tonight. “Can you cast a black woman in that role? Can you cast a black man in that role?” said the actress.

She also added that “the people who are in power who have the yay or nay vote” should be asking to fix the diversity issue. Davis went on to say that the compensation provided to coloured actors is also not a problem.

“You could probably line up all the A-List black actresses out there [and] they probably don’t make what one A-List white woman makes in one film. That’s the problem. You can change the Academy, but if there are no black films being produced, what is there to vote for?” said the actress.

Davis, who was nominated twice by the Academy for her role in “Doubt” in 2009 and “The Help” in 2012, also became the first black actress to win an Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series in 2015. The actress won the accolade for her role in “How to Get Away with Murder.”

She also left it up to host Chris Rock to decide if he should drop out of hosting this year’s Oscar’s show. “Like I said, the Oscars are not really the issue,” said the actress. “It’s a symptom of a much greater disease. But if he does, I hope he takes it as an opportunity to make a statement, a social statement about change. It’s 2016.”

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