I agree with Tavis Smiley’s argument, I am pleased that Viola and Octavia got nominated for Oscars but I am disappointed their roles in The Help were mammies!
I understand Viola’s argument that the black artist cannot always be noble but Hollywood has such a myopic and racist perspective about black women.
Viola knows she will never get the complex roles that the A list white actresses such as Nicole Kidman, Angelina Jolie, Reese Witherspoon get.
I see Viola’s perspective that black actors are also individuals and they have a right to choose the roles they want. However, I think Viola and Octavia need to be honest with themselves.
Black entertainers represent the black community and they must be cognizant of the roles they play.
Black women are consistently stereotyped as being nurturing, asexual, especially if the actress is dark-skinned and full-figured.
Viola and Octavia were forced to gain weight for their roles in The Help. Kathryn Stockett’s novel is so racist and filled with such negativity and contempt for black women and the movie is worse.
The Help is some Disney sugar coated attempt to white wash America’s racist history!
White Hollywood is a very racist liberal place that claims to be progressive. However, there hasn’t been much progress for black women in the year 2012 because Viola and Octavia are being celebrated
for playing maids!
In the year 1940, Hattie McDaniel won the best supporting Oscar for her role as mammy in Gone with the Wind.
Now over seventy years later Viola and Octavia are being praised by white Hollywood for their roles as mammies in The Help. Where are the quality good roles for black women? Black women are treated
terribly by the film industry they are either maids, mammies or whores like Halle Berry’s character Leticia Musgrove in Monster’s Ball.
Why can’t a black actress have a three-dimensional role where she is not subservient to a white person? Why can’t a black woman be a doctor, teacher, police officer, lawyer, president, in a movie?