Viola Davis won the Emmy Award for Best Lead Actress in a Drama at Sunday night’s 2015 Primetime Emmy Awards. The actress was nominated against Taraji P. Henson from “Empire,” Claire Danes from “Homeland,” Robin Wright from “House of Cards,” Elisabeth Olson from “Mad Men” and Tatiana Maslany from “Orphan Black.”
Davis is the first black woman to win in this category at the Emmys. She started her quote with a speech from Harriet Tubman.
“ 'In my mind, I see a line and over that line I see green fields and lovely flowers and beautiful, white women with their arms stretched out to me over that line, but I can't seem to get there no how. I can't seem to get over that line.' That was Harriet Tubman in the 1800s,” Davis, 50, said. “And let me tell you sometimes the only thing that separates women of color from anyone else is opportunity. You cannot win an Emmy for roles that are simply not there.”
She thanked writers behind "How to Get Away With Murder," like Pete Nowalk and Shonda Rhimes. However, she didn't just limit her thanks to the people on her show.
"[Thank you] to people who redefined what it means to be beautiful to be sexy, to be a leading woman, to be black," she said. She went on to thank Taraji P. Henson, Halle Berry, Gabrielle Union and several other accomplished black actresses.
OMG!!! I'm floored... and proud and crying... VIOLA VIOLA VIOLA!!! Thank you for letting us share your shine!!! Man... tears
— Gabrielle Union (@itsgabrielleu) September 21, 2015
This is Davis' first nomination and win. She plays Annalise Keating, a professor who helps her students cover up the murder of her husband, on the ABC drama.
Watch Davis' speech below: