Viola Davis had a hard life growing up.
She was born on a former plantation in St. Matthews in a one-room shack with no running water, and her family struggled in poverty after a move to Rhode Island.
During these hard times, Davis found solace in reading.
In a March 13 interview with People magazine, Davis said that she rarely found herself reflected in the pages of a book, until she came across the picture book "Corduroy." The book, published in 1968, follows the adventure of Corduroy the teddy bear as he searches for a missing button with his friend Lisa, an African-American girl.
Inspired by the book, Davis has written a continuation of the story with "Corduroy Takes A Bow," to be published on Sept. 4 , the 50th anniversary of the original book. In this latest adventure, Corduroy and Lisa visit the theater for the first time and go exploring behind the scenes before ending up on stage.
Davis said in the interview that "To be able to introduce a new generation, including my daughter, to this character that was so special to me in my childhood is an incredible honor.”
The actress is mother to 6-year-old daughter Genesis. She also the first African-American actress to win Tony ("Fences" and "King Hedley II"), Oscar ("Fences") and Emmy ("How to Get Away with Murder") awards. Her next big-screen project is in director Steve McQueen's "Widows" with Liam Neeson, Colin Farrell, Michelle Rodriguez and Robert Duvall.