The last time Viola Davis starred as a working class black woman in a film set in the 1960s, she earned an Oscar nomination. As her wonderful turn in Doubt upped her profile a couple dozen degrees, DreamWorks just signed Davis for the lead role in The Help, the high profile adaptation of Kathryn Stockett’s best-selling novel of the same name. According to Variety, Davis will play Aibileen, a maid who incites controversy throughout Jackson, Mississippi in the early sixties with a frank interview that details the realities of her employment.
Emma Stone (Zombieland) is circling the role of the aspiring writer who interviews Aibileen; Tate Taylor, who scripted the adaptation, is set to direct. Details after the jump:
It should be noted that Davis earned her nomination with less than fifteen minutes of screen time, so you know she’s got the goods. This sounds like a meaty role that could net the enchantress even more acclaim if it ends up being that kind of picture. You can currently catch Davis weekly on The United States of Tara, where she shines in a plotline that promises to be interesting eventually. She’ll next be seen on a silver-er screen in Knight and Day with Cameron Diaz and Tom Cruise, literary adaptation Eat, Pray, Love alongside Julia Roberts, as well as November’s It’s Kind of a Funny Story.
Stone is another actress whose career has benefited from exposure in a recent role, though it was definitely not that kind of picture (zombies!). An agent recently described the lust surrounding the project, saying, “Every young girl in Hollywood wants in on this.” Emma Stone will soon be seen in Easy A, a loose adaptation of The Scarlet Letter with considerable buzz about town. She’s also thinking that joining Steve Carell and Ryan Gosling for Crazy, Stupid Love might be a good idea–I’m inclined to agree.