(Photo: Courtesy Essence Magazine)
Essence magazine has hailed actress Kerry Washington one of the five women who will be honored at its 2012 “Black Woman in Hollywood” luncheon (February 23) and the actress covers the magazine’s March 2012 issue as a part of the honor.
Washington poses in a white gown with a confident stance and smug smile and told the magazine that the tide is turning for Black woman in Tinsletown.
“I think it’s a really special time to be a woman of color in this business. The landscape of who has the power is changing," she said. "We are in more influential positions and are able to have a say in the stories that are told. I feel very lucky to be in the business now.…”
The 35-year-old beauty will star in Shonda Rhimes's upcoming drama Scandal this spring, becoming the first Black actress to lead a drama based on a real-life Black woman, crisis manager consultant Judy Smith. Last month director Ava DuVernay (I Will Follow) also broke barriers and became the first Black woman to win "Best Director" at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival and Dee Reese’s Pariah, starring newcomer Adepero Oduye, and was a sensation among the indie award trail in 2011.
Still, for all the progress and accolades among Black women in the film industry (and for some new faces for once), Oscar-nominee Viola Davis (The Help) has noted in acceptance speeches and other Awards season press that there is still a lack of different Black story lines on the big screen. She urged filmmakers to consider Black stories and consider Black actresses, in particular, for roles, even for characters who's descriptions don't specify race. "You don't always love what you do, but what keeps me in the business is hope," Davis said while being honored at Elle magazine's Women in Hollywood lunch. "Hope that women of color are also a part of the narrative. That our stories are just as potent because we also have the power of transformation. We also have the power to be quirky and sexy and different, funny, heartfelt, all of those things. I consider it a larger purpose in life that keeps me in the business."
Scandal premieres April 5, 10 P.M. ET on ABC.
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