Grab all the details of ‘Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom’ star Viola Davis’ unbelievable weight loss transformation, diet plan, and fitness routine through the inspection of before and after pictures.
As movie fanatics and trivia lovers, we’re always fascinated by the dedication the actors put to perform their parts.
Although acting skills are evident, what is equally praiseworthy are the drastic changes that the stars voluntarily commit to, in order to get into the shape of their characters.
The recent demonstration is displayed by the Oscar winner and one of Hollywood’s most influential stars – Viola Davis.
Davis experienced a remarkable physical transformation from playing the lead role in Netflix musical Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom (2020) to her next The Woman King (TBD).
After adding nearly 200 pounds to fit into the shoes of the iconic African-American artist, Davis posted a fitness photo of herself on social networks showcasing unbelievable weight loss, as she toned in readiness for her upcoming project.
From Weight Gain to Weight Loss – Viola Davis’ Unbelievable Body Transformation
Preparing for her starring role in Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom (2020), Oscar recipient Viola Davis added weight, since the real Ma Rainey was an unrepentant woman who needed a lot of space on the screen.
Viola told Zora:
I didn’t want [Ma] to physically look like she was apologizing for herself. I wanted her to switch.
If those breasts were hanging out like that? They just hung out. She was unapologetic about her sexuality.
I just feel like in playing her, I had to honor that.
Now, Viola is trying to get back to her pre-Ma Rainey frame and posted a snapshot of her routine with trainer Gabriela Mclain on Instagram.
Viola Davis’ weight loss transformation for ‘The Woman King’ is beyond incredible.
Image Source: Weight & Skin
Typically, Viola trains with Mclain three days a week, performing hour-long workouts at 6 a.m. in an effort to achieve desired weight loss.
Most of the time it’s a little cooler and the muscles are stiff and she may be working the night before.
They always begin with a 10-minute warm-up of stretches and light cardio, and agility exercises including butt kicks, high knees, and folded squats.
Every week, Viola performs one kickboxing exercise, one muscle mass training, and one carving workout.
Kickboxing exercises are all about cardio.
We focus on burning fat and speeding up the metabolism, letting the blood flow, keeping the body agile, and warming it up for the week.
The routine involves sidekick strikes, uppers, jabs, roundhouse kicks, resulting in a routine of 10 or so kickboxing techniques. It’s like Tabata, except it’s more concentrated.
Viola’s power routine is a series of workouts involving weights between 10 and 25 lbs, such as squats, chest presses, and deadlifts, among several others.
The loops are super intense, and Viola gets merely 30 seconds to take a breather between each of them.
In a sculpting workout, Mclain uses smaller weights and pressure bands to develop the stamina of Viola. There isn’t a lot of recovery time!
We’re resting by switching muscle groups. I’m just flowing from muscle to muscle until every muscle on our body is exhausted.
Using a big weaved resistance kit, Viola squats overhead presses, sidekicks, triceps bends, and close-up biceps twists. She also performs some experiments with ankle weights and lighter dumbbells.
Every exercise concludes with a few minutes of core conditioning.
The abs are such a big muscle and there’s so many of them.
Then, Viola is stretching or using resistance bands, all of which have benefitted massively as we can notice her impressive weight loss.
On the off-days between exercises, the starlet uses a silicone roller or a massage ball to hit the sore muscles in her hips or rests in a sauna or jacuzzi to relieve post-training discomfort. She works with a physical trainer once a week to relax her muscles.
Check out Viola Davis’s complete workout routine here.
Viola Davis’s Unreal Physical Transformation Deserves More Praise
Davis’ weight loss journey has caught eyeballs, not just because of her considerable popularity, but also because of the admirable commitment of the 55-year-old to her art.
However, it has prompted those in social media to question if Viola’s contributions have earned adequate recognition or not.
A Twitter user addressed the issue of supposed “sexism” against actors of separate races, saying that “nobody talks about” Davis’s work with as much admiration as was obvious during Joaquin Phoenix‘s weight loss journey for Joker (2019).
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It ignited an online discussion about women’s visibility in movies for the physical work they put in their art.
Let's not drag racism or sexism into this. Joker was a huge film by a very well known actor & his weight loss was shocking. Viola isn't as famous and wasn't in a hugely accredited film. Anyway, her achievement is still incredible. Let's not turn it into something it's not.
— ♥ (@3irlys) December 20, 2020
Another Twitter user, whose reaction to the original tweet was a point of contention, argued the respect given to Phoenix was due to the magnitude of the movie and its success, which is beyond and above that of Davis.
They further urged others “not to drag racism or sexism into this.” To start off, in the beginning, the argument that Davis “is not as famous” as Phoenix is strongly disprovable.
Simply put, Viola is the first female African-American star to win the prestigious ‘Triple Crown in Acting’ – the three gems of the Academy, the Emmy, and the Tony Awards.
It’s hard to imagine the American legal thriller How To Get Away With Murder or the period drama film The Help (2011) without her captivating stage persona.
Phoenix, himself an Academy Award winner, has also appeared on respected worldwide lists of outstanding artists countless times.
His work in Joker, though not exactly equal to Heath Ledger on The Dark Knight (2008), which was beyond incredible, to say the least, while his undernourished image was all the more disturbing.
Plaudits is not a stretch, as the 46-year-old won an Oscar for his performance.
And so, because we consider both Phoenix and Davis as experts of their respective forms of acting, our personal belief forbids us from putting one above the other.
Viola Davis Discusses ‘Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom’ and Late Star Chadwick Boseman
The Academy Awards have another promising sensation with the new arrival of Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom on Netflix.
The movie features Viola Davis as legendary blues singer Ma Rainey, a figure who has invented a whole genre of music but can only be seen in seven images all over the world.
In a recent interview, Davis said:
You have to rely on your investigative skills. You have to rely on your observations in life to sort of fill in the blanks because there were seven pictures but they were musicians at the time that talked about her, the way she looked.
Davis is the next in a string of brilliant performers to play the part of Ma Rainey in late American playwright August Wilson‘s award-winning play of the same title.
Though critics lauded her performance, Davis stated she carried a certain form of inspiration from one of her predecessors.
I think that is very OK when an actor steals from another actor. And I stole from another actor and the actor is Barbara Meek, great actress out of Providence, Rhode Island. It was the first Ma Rainey I had ever seen, and I thought it just was brilliant.
The film also represents the last ever role played by Chadwick Boseman before his tragic demise in August.
Viola Davis continued collaborating with the late Black Panther star after working with Boseman in James Brown‘s biographical musical drama Get on Up (2014).
The actress revealed,
I played his mom, so I was always calling in my baby. I always sort of saw him like that. I probably would not have said that to him because he may have cringed.
To work with Chadwick is to be in the presence of greatness, really. And I actually don’t see him tragically — I know he lost his life at 43 — because of what he did with the time he had.
Representatives of Chadwick Boseman announced on 28th August 2020 that he had passed away in his home after battling colon cancer.