Viola Davis' new crime thriller Widows is about a group of women who take their power back after their criminal husbands are killed by going through with one final heist.
While there is plenty to be said about a film that stars a slew of women of different races and walks of life — played by Cynthia Erivo, Michelle Rodriguez and Elizabeth Debicki — the diverse gang of leading ladies wasn't the only thing that Davis was thrilled to see onscreen.
Speaking at a screening on the 20th Century Fox lot in Los Angeles on Tuesday, per The Wrap, Davis revealed why she was so pleased to kiss her onscreen husband, Liam Neeson, in one pivotal moment from the movie.
"I don’t care how much people say they’re committed to inclusivity — they’re not committed to [showing an interracial couple in that way]," Davis told the audience at the screening. "[In the opening shot of the film, you] have a dark-skinned woman with a big nose and wide lips and all of that and her natural hair kissing, romantically kissing, a white man onscreen."
Davis shared kind words for 12 Years A Slave director McQueen.
"Steve [McQueen] saw me as this woman," Davis told the crowd of the Widows director, before adding: "I migrate toward people who actually see me. I actually do have a vagina."
The truth is, Black women are rarely allowed to take up the space that Davis does in Widows. According to statistics from Women and Hollywood, of the top 100 grossing films of 2017, only four movies were driven by a woman of colour, with only one leading actress over the age of 45. Black women, when they are seen onscreen, don't often get the romantic storylines of their white peers.
A kiss isn't just a kiss in the case of Widows. Let's hope that McQueen's film, and Davis' performance, are a reminder that Black women need to be everywhere in Hollywood... including the arms of Liam Neeson.