First she received slack from portraying the ‘hired help’ in The Help, now Viola Davis’ current movie is receiving backlash from protesters. At the recent premiere of Won’t Back Down in Los Angeles, protesters showed up to express their anger about the film. Won’t Back Down is loosely based on The Parent Trigger law, which was passed in California and other states in 2010. This law allows parents to enforce administrative overhaul and overrule administrators in underperforming public schools if petitioned. In the movie, Davis and her co-star, Maggie Gyllenhaal, are two angry parents (one a teacher, the other a bartender) that are fed up with the corrupt teachers union and the principal of the school played by Ving Rhames.
Protesters are upset over the portrayal of teacher’s unions and the bad wrap they’ve received in the movie. The operative word is movie. Protesters showed up to the premiere with signs and chanted things like, “Won’t Back Down, Get Out Of Town”. The movie isn’t so much about the teacher’s unions, but about two parents who had strong enough convictions to fight for a proper education for their children and other students.
When appearing on the TODAY show Monday morning Davis applauded the protesters, stating, “I welcome protests. I welcome discourse; I think discourse is a good thing. I think it spearheads change…. And you know what, in this movie the teacher at the end of the day is the hero. They save the day. And it’s a system that’s broken, that needs to be fixed.”
Do you feel the protesters are warranted in protesting the movie?