Hello Beautiful got a chance to visit New Orleans to interview Viola Davis while she was on location. Here’s what she had to say:
HB: Were you familiar with the “Beautiful Creatures” series of teen books?
Viola Davis: I was not familiar at all. I’m surprised. I have so many nieces and nephews who are that age. I just thought the script was fabulous. It’s a good read. It really is very entertaining. And what I like about it is that it deals so much with the past. Usually movies like this are so futuristic and project into the future but this one really dealt with the past and how it informed these characters in the present. I’m a sucker for a great love story even if they’re teenagers I just love it.
There are fabulous things about “Beautiful Creatures.” There’s a depth to the storyline dealing with the Civil War. Like my character and Jeremy Irons character and how our families intertwine.
HB: Tell us about the mystical, magic woman Amma. Originally she was a maid, right?
Viola Davis: In the book Amma is an older woman who is a housekeeper and then there’s Marian who is the librarian who has a PHD. They’ve combined those two characters and come up with moi. I said, “I don’t want to be seen with an apron. I don’t want to clean anything. I don’t to cook anything.”
After coming off “The Help” — actually even if I didn’t come off “The Help” — I didn’t want (with the pieces of the puzzle this movie put together) for my role to be one of servitude. I wanted to be in it. So Amma is a friend of Ethan’s mother and I said I want to look like the friend after the mother is gone. I said I’ll come in with some food but if we’re eating we have to eat together! I don’t wanna be cooking it in a pot.
You know, if Viola Davis, who’s been nominated for Best Actress by the Academy Awards, says she likes the script, it can’t be all that bad, right? In fact, the movie may actually be very excellent, despite the fact that she’s a combination of two characters in the books.
And I like that she wants to distinguish her character as not being one of servitude, since, as you recall, she wasn’t really that in the books, either.
You can read the full interview at Hello Beautiful.