• Viola Davis talks playing Michelle Obama
  • She doesn't have kind words about critics
  • Davis explains why Obama is difficult to portray

Viola Davis is hitting back at those who have said negative things about how she plays Michelle Obama! The Oscar-winning actress portrays the former First Lady in a new television series for Showtime, and in a recent interview, she was candid about why she doesn't appreciate the criticism.

Davis believes critics "serve absolutely no purpose"

Davis spoke to the BBC's Today, acknowledging how critics' recent comments have affected her. She admitted that she finds the manner in which they have antagonized her performance in The First Lady "incredibly hurtful," saying that she finds criticism gives people "an opportunity to be cruel." She didn't stop there though when it came to her critiques of critics! 

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The star then doubled down on her dislike of them, expressing her belief that critics "serve absolutely no purpose." Davis, who has garnered critical acclaim for her roles in films such as Fences and Ma Rainey's Black Bottom, then went on to explain why playing Obama was a challenging task for her. She shared that it was "very difficult" to portray someone who people are so familiar with, to the point that they pay attention to every minute detail.

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“People know how they walk, how they talk and how they hold their pearls, so it’s very difficult," Davis shared. Casting for The First Lady was originally announced in 2020, when the show was titled First Ladies. The miniseries also sees several other big name actresses such as Gillian Anderson and Michelle Pfeiffer stepping into the roles of former political figures, portraying Eleanor Roosevelt and Betty Ford respectively.