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Best Actress nominees Davis and Williams on the Red Carpet

posted 26 Feb 2012, 16:41 by Sam Mbale   [ updated 26 Feb 2012, 16:42 ]

Best Actress nominees Viola Davis and Michelle Williams on the Red Carpet. 

USA-RED CARPET BEST ACTRESS - Best Actress nominees Viola Davis and Michelle Davis are filmed on the Red Carpet ahead of the Academy Awards Ceremony.

Davis receives her second Oscar nod for her role as Abileen, a wise black maid who takes a risk by helping an aspiring white writer (Emma Stone) pen a tell-all book about the experience of working for white families in civil rights-era Mississippi. Davis, 46, has only recently become known by the filmgoing public, with her breakout role in 2008's "Doubt," for which she received her first nomination for supporting actress, though she has been working steadily in films and on stage since the mid 1990s, and won two Tony awards during her illustrious Broadway career. Davis could easily take home the Oscar this year, having beat early favorite Streep at the Critics' Choice Awards and SAG awards, the latter of which is decided by the acting branch, which makes up the largest portion of the roughly 5,000-member Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

Michelle Williams is nominated for her third Academy Award for her role as troubled film star Marilyn Monroe in "My Week With Marilyn." The film depicts a brief period of Monroe's turbulent life and marriage to playwright Arthur Miller during the production of the 1957 Laurence Olivier-directed film "The Prince and the Showgirl" during which she forms a friendship with aspiring filmmaker Colin Clark, who wrote two books on the alleged relationship. Her previous nominations include that for her lead role in 2010's "Blue Valentine," and for her supporting role in 2006's "Brokeback Mountain." During the production of "Brokeback Mountain," Williams, 31, began a relationship with late actor Heath Ledger, who died in 2008. The couple have a daughter, Matilda, who was born in 2005.