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Viola Davis wins supporting actress Oscar for 'Fences'

Associated Press logo Associated Press 2/27/2017 By BETH HARRIS, Associated Press
Mark Rylance, right, presents Viola Davis with the award for best actress in a supporting role for "Fences" at the Oscars on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2017, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP) © The Associated Press Mark Rylance, right, presents Viola Davis with the award for best actress in a supporting role for "Fences" at the Oscars on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2017, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Viola Davis needs to make room in her trophy case.

Viola Davis accepts the award for best actress in a supporting role for "Fences" at the Oscars on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2017, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP) © The Associated Press Viola Davis accepts the award for best actress in a supporting role for "Fences" at the Oscars on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2017, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)

She won the Oscar as best supporting actress for "Fences," a role she originated on Broadway seven years ago for which she won a Tony Award.

Denzel Washington, right, congratulates Viola Davis, winner of the award for best actress in a supporting role for "Fences" at the Oscars on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2017, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP) © The Associated Press Denzel Washington, right, congratulates Viola Davis, winner of the award for best actress in a supporting role for "Fences" at the Oscars on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2017, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)

Davis played long-suffering Rose Maxson opposite Denzel Washington as her husband Troy, a couple living in 1950s Pittsburgh whose marriage eventually falls apart. The role earned her trophies at the Golden Globes and SAG Awards.

Viola Davis, winner of the award for best actress in a supporting role for "Fences," right, and Julius Tennon kiss at the Oscars on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2017, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP) © The Associated Press Viola Davis, winner of the award for best actress in a supporting role for "Fences," right, and Julius Tennon kiss at the Oscars on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2017, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. (Photo by Chris Pizzello/Invision/AP)

Davis also owns an Emmy award for her work on the ABC hit "How to Get Away With Murder." Two years ago, she became the first black woman to win for lead actress in a drama series, and she's the first black woman to win an Oscar, Emmy and Tony..

Viola Davis arrives at the Oscars on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2017, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP) © The Associated Press Viola Davis arrives at the Oscars on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2017, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP)

Winning an Oscar for the first time in three nominations, an emotional Davis clutched her statue and saluted late playwright August Wilson, saying the "Fences" author "exhumed and exalted the ordinary people."

She singled out her director Washington, glancing down at him sitting in the front row at the Dolby Theatre.

"Thank you for putting two entities in the driving seat: August and god," Davis said. "They served you well."

The Juilliard-trained actress also thanked her parents, Dan and Mary Alice Davis, who raised her in the impoverished town of Central Falls, Rhode Island.

"I'm so thankful that god chose you to bring me into this world," she said.

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