Viola Davis is taking home the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress for her devastating performance in Fences. After taking the stage to accept her award, she proceeded to level the audience with a soaring speech that brought some there to tears. Host Jimmy Kimmel even said that she ought to get an Emmy for it.
"We are the only profession that celebrates what it means to live a life," she said in her speech, before going on to praise both director Denzel Washington and the late American playwright August Wilson, who published Fences in 1985. "Here's to August Wilson, who exhumed and exalted the ordinary people," she added.
The Best Supporting Actress Oscar is Davis’ first. Tonight’s win makes her the first black actor to win the so-called triple crown of acting, as she now has an Oscar, Tony, and Emmy to her name. The distinction puts her in the company of such actors as Helen Mirren and Al Pacino.