Viola Davis Isn’t Afraid Of ‘Won’t Back Down’ Controversy

Viola Davis, star of the box office disappointment Won’t Back Down, isn’t afraid or intimidated by the controversy her “parent trigger” drama is generating. According to The Christian Post, the actress welcomes the discourse generated by the hot-button motion picture. Besides, wagging tongues could help the movie generate some much-needed box office business.

“I welcome protests. I welcome discourse; I think discourse is a good thing,” the actress explained during her appearance on the TODAY Show. “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.”

Won’t Back Down, which also stars Maggie Gyllenhaal and Holly Hunter, follows the exploits of two concerned moms who decide to wage a war against what they consider to be a failing school system. The film’s criticism of the teacher’s union hasn’t settled well with critics and viewers, though Viola Davis and her co-stars don’t appear to be too concerned about the ensuing controversy.

During a recent promotional interview with the International Business Times, Maggie Gyllenhaal addressed the movie’s portrayal of the teachern’s union. “Clearly — and I don’t know anyone who’d disagree — there are huge problems with the teachers union,” she explained. “So you can be in support of a teachers union and unions in general, but if you don’t take the time to look at things that are broken … then it will fall apart completely. Can we not even take a look at ways that the teachers union isn’t functioning without being called anti-union?”

The ensuing backlash surrounding Won’t Back Down have apparently taken its toll on the film’s box office performance. Over the course of the weekend, the film, which opened in over 2,500 theaters, only managed to earn around $2.7 million. Given that the movie reportedly cost around $19 million to make, the flick has a ways to go before it sees a profit.

Did you catch Won’t Back Down over the weekend? Do you agree with Viola Davis and Maggie Gyllenhaal regarding the film’s politics?