Viola Davis And Denzel Washington On The Things They’ve Taught Their Children And What They Hope For Them
Bruce Glikas

Fences opens Christmas Day, but ESSENCE caught up with the cast of the film during a special screening in NYC to discuss the highly anticipated film and how it relates to their lives.

One of the major relationships in the film is between Denzel Washington’s Troy and up-and-coming actor Jovan Adepo’s Cory. The father-son relationship explores the idea of legacy and inheritance, what we pass on to our children and what our parents have passed on to us. We asked Washington and co-star Viola Davis, who plays Troy’s wife Rose, what they hope they’ve taught and passed on to their own children.

“There are already things they’ve learned,” said Washington, “Good things I’ve done and bad things. It’s one thing when you tell them things and they listen, but they also watch.”

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Davis, who’s role in the film is already garnering Oscar buzz, said, “There’s two things: I want her to have a passion for what she does — I want her to be a citizen of the world — and I want her to own her story. If she could own her story, I think that is — that is to me — the true definition of strength. Everything. Her vulnerability, her failures, her successes, and she owns them to the point where she can move through her life without beating herself up.”

Don’t forget to check out Fences when it hits theaters on Dec. 25.