Viola Davis honored with Icon award at 12th annual AAFCA awards

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Viola Davis continues to collect trophies this awards season.

The “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom” star was honored with the Icon award at the 12th annual African American Film Critics Association Awards on Wednesday. “Ma Rainey” co-star Colman Domingo presented her with the award, and described Davis as “one of the greatest actors of all time.”

“Thank you to the African American Film Critics Association for this great honor. I’ve always struggled my entire career — probably life — feeling like I’m worthy of all this praise. I think what makes it an easy sort of pill to swallow is when I think of people like August Wilson and I think about directors like George C. Wolfe and Denzel Washington,” she said.

She added: “My acceptance of any of this praise is equal to my absolute passion to leave a legacy, a legacy for brown-skinned girls just like me who were told they were invisible…. It’s been the ride of my life to have this career.”

Davis, who has starred in Wilson productions on stage and screen, described the late playwright as “our modern day griot, who absolutely believed that black lives did matter.”

She received the award after winning the Screen Actors Guild Award for outstanding performance by a female actor a few days prior. She also received an Oscar nomination for Best Actress last month, making history as the most-nominated black actress ever at the Academy Awards.

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On Thursday, she posted a photo in a yellow Greta Constantine dress, while sporting a new pixie haircut. “Honored to receive the Icon Award last night! Thank you AAFCA,” she wrote.

Mariah Carey, Andra Day and the late Chadwick Boseman were also honored at the virtual awards show.

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