Two-time Emmy nominee Taraji P. Henson is opening up about her Emmy loss to Viola Davis on Sunday, and as expected, she doesn’t consider it a loss.
On today’s episode of The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Taraji—who would’ve become the first black woman to win an Emmy for Outstanding Lead Actress in a Drama Series—admits to Ellen that winning over Viola would’ve felt weird.
“I just thought to myself, ‘God, just please give it to one of us so we’ll never have to say that again.’ You know, let’s just break this barrier down and keep on pushing, you know? And I think the universe is happy. Um, Viola deserved that award, and honestly, I would’ve felt weird if I would’ve gotten it over her. You know what I mean? She’s been doing it longer. Like, you just gotta give respect and know when your time is.”
Taraji later adds that she felt the universe needed to hear Viola’s acceptance speech, and while she believes her speech would’ve been equally great, she acknowledges the weight of Viola’s message.
Side note: Users of social media are raving about Taraji’s genuine happiness for Viola and Regina King (who also won an Emmy on Sunday), so while she may have lost to Viola, she’s far from a loser.