Viola Davis Details Intense Training She Did for ‘The Woman King’ Role on ‘Hot Ones’

Acclaimed star of stage and screen Viola Davis, whose latest film 'The Woman King' is out now, joins host Sean Evans for a new episode of 'Hot Ones.'

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Viola Davis, whose critically acclaimed film The Woman King is now in theaters, is the latest star to join host Sean Evans on Hot Ones.

First up, Davis was asked to summarize her relationship with spicy food, prompting a South Carolina shoutout.

“You know, I grew up around spicy food,” the Oscar, Emmy, and Tony award-winner said. “South Carolina, you know, you can’t get out enough. But as I’ve aged, some things are going on in my digestive system. But I’m hopeful.”

From there, Davis was asked about the experience of staging genuinely epic-sized battle sequences for the aforementioned The Woman King. While the sheer magnitude of such scenes created an environment of “total fear,” Davis explained, the extensive training behind it all would likely prove useful as she made her way through the Hot Ones lineup.

“The environment is just complete and total fear. … It’s fear, because you have to toss two-hundred-and-something pound men over your shoulder, there are swords, you’re trying not to get hurt,” Davis said, while mentioning she trained 5 hours a day for the movie.

“The fact that I’m sitting here right now eating hot wings and I’m still alive is a testament to the training for this movie,” Davis told Evans.

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Toward the end of the showdown centered on the reliably revelatory pairing of hot questions and even hotter wings, the conversation took an inspiringly introspective turn. After Evans mentioned a certain Joseph Campbell quote of which Davis is known to be fond, she elaborated on the larger idea of life’s true purpose. 

“Now we’re about to get deep, while I’m choking to death. … I just feel like our whole journey in our life is becoming our ideal selves,” Davis said around 22 minutes into the new episode. “We get stripped away as we go along the journey.”

This process, Davis noted, begins as soon as we enter this world.

“At the end of the day, you come into this world, you are absolutely who you are,” she said. “Then your parents come along and they try to imprint themselves on you. Your friends, society. You know, ‘This is the school you have to go to, this is how pretty you have to look, this is what you have to wear.’ And I think somewhere along the line is a voice deep within you that tells you exactly who you are. You just have to have the courage to do that.”

A key moment on everyone’s individual journey, per Davis, is to “answer the call to adventure.”

See the full Viola Davis-featuring episode of Hot Ones via the video up top. For other recent episodes, hit this link.

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