If you can’t get what you want at the movies, go to television. Viola Davis, Tony-winning Broadway star and Oscar-nominated supporting Hollywood player, now has her own ABC TV series thanks to Shonda Rhimes, who made Kerry Washington a star with “Scandal.” This one will follow that one on Thursday nights.
Davis knocks it out of the park in James Brown biopic “Get On Up” as the funk founder’s abused, but persevering mother. But film isn’t fulfilling her. At last month’s TV Critics Association panel in Los Angeles, Davis talked about the dearth of strong black female roles in Hollywood: “I will be bold enough to say that I have gotten so many wonderful film roles… But I’ve felt like I’ve been invited to a really fabulous party to only hold up the wall. I wanted to be the show.”
Well now, she may have her shot, albeit on cable TV, at reclaiming an underserved niche. Check the trailer below for ABC fall series “How to Get Away with Murder,” which looks like “Damages” meets “House,” basically. Davis plays the tough-as-nails law professor and high-powered attorney, but is she on the right side of the law? How willing is she to do what it takes to win a case, and what legal ethics is she teaching her students? Rhimes can build on all that writing she did for hit TV series “Private Practice” (2007–2013).
Check the “How to Get Away with Murder” trailer below, which also features Alfred Enoch (“Harry Potter”) and Matt McGorry (“Orange Is the New Black”). The series bows on ABC September 25.