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Viola Davis reveals why she wanted to be with someone who has kids

The Oscar-winning actor says she prayed to find a man who had children.
/ Source: TODAY

Viola Davis says her prayer was answered when she met husband Julius Tennon.

The Oscar, Emmy and Tony Award winner said she followed the advice of a friend by getting on her knees to ask God for help when it came to finding the man of her dreams.

“He said, ‘Viola, even the vacuous stuff. Just put it all in there. Looks, everything,” Davis said in a preview clip of “Oprah + Viola: A Netflix Special Event.” “I said, ‘Really? With God? I got to tell him that?’ He’s like, ‘Yes. You got to put it all out there.’ And I went, I got on my knees, and I did.”

Davis, 56, and Tennon, 68, married in 2003 and share daughter Genesis, 11. She is also stepmother to Tennon’s two other kids. Davis said she laid it out all for God to hear, including her desire to be with a man who had children.

“I said, ‘I want a big, Black man from the South who’s probably been married before, has kids, because I don’t want any pressure in that department," she said. "Someone who’s maybe been an actor, who understands the artistic community. Someone who goes to church and loves God.’”

Davis, who can currently be seen playing Michelle Obama in the Showtime series “The First Lady,” said she vowed to be more religious if a man entered her life.

“I said, ‘If you give me that, I’ll start going to church, God. I really will. I’m committed to it,’” she said. “And then I signed off, just like writing a letter. And three and a half weeks later, I met Julius from Texas. Ex-football player, because actually that’s one of the things I put on, a football player, athlete.”

93rd Annual Academy Awards - Arrivals
Viola Davis and Julius Tennon attend the 93rd Annual Academy Awards at Union Station on April 25, 2021 in Los Angeles.Matt Sayles / A.M.P.A.S. via Getty Images

David said he was the whole package, noting that in addition to being a football player, he had been married, raised his own children and also acted. She said he invited her to church and their meeting proved to be a watershed moment.

“I thought to myself, ‘Whoa,’” she said.

“Oprah + Viola: A Netflix Special Event” will be available to stream Friday on Netflix.