Viola Davis is aware that not everyone loves her portrayal of Michelle Obama in the Showtime series, “The First Lady.”
During a recent interview with BBC News Viola Davis admits that it is “incredibly hurtful when people say negative things about your work.”
“How do you move on from the hurt, from failure?” she said. “But you have to. Not everything is going to be an awards-worthy performance.” On the other hand, Viola says, “critics absolutely serve no purpose. And I’m not saying that to be nasty, either.”
“They always feel like they’re telling you something that you don’t know,” she continued. “Somehow that you’re living a life that you’re surrounded by people who lie to you and ‘I’m going to be the person that leans in and tells you the truth,’ so it gives them an opportunity to be cruel to you. But ultimately I feel like it is my job as a leader to make bold choices. Win or fail it is my duty to do that.”
Prior to the release of the show, the veteran actress revealed that she was facing “anxiety” at the thought of Michelle Obama not liking her portrayal.“Let me tell you something, not does the thought of Michelle Obama watching the show come to mind, it keeps me up at night,” Viola Davis said.
She continued, “You don’t want to insult them by your portrayal… As much as we feel like we know Michelle Obama – and I did everything I could to research there are those private moments where there’s some level of creative decision-making that you have to take.”
Many fans deemed her performance “cringy.”