I kinda feel like that's just good advice all the time for everyone, right? Confused about what to eat at lunch? Just look at Viola Davis and be happy she exists and eat whatever you damn well please!

Washington took part in the Hollywood Reporter's annual actor's roundtable along with Jamie Foxx, Matt Damon, Richard Gere, Alan Arkin and John Hawkes. In the interview, Washington discusses the advice he gave his daughter Olivia, who apparently wants to pursue an acting career:

"I tell my daughter - she's at NYU - I say: 'You're black, you're a woman, and you're dark-skinned at that. So you have to be a triple/quadruple threat.' I said: ‘You gotta learn how to act. You gotta learn how to dance, sing, move onstage.' That's the only place, in my humble opinion, you really learn how to act. I said: ‘Look at Viola Davis.' I said That's who you want to be. Forget about the little pretty girls; if you're relying on that, when girls; if you're relying on that, when you hit 40, you're out the door. You you hit 40, you're out the door. You better have some chops."

My advice woulda been DON'T EAT AND GET GOOD AT SEX. Jkjk, I think Washington's advice is much more solid.

In a weird way, it reminds me of the advice that Jason Schwartzman said Bill Murray gave him about acting. I'm paraphrasing because this is from a talk before a screening of Rushmore back in 1999 or 2000, but Schwartzman said that when he asked Murray for acting advice, Murray said to him, "How much do you weigh, kid?" and Schwartzman was all, "Uh, I don't know, 120?" (or whatever, I don't remember Schwartzman's exact poundage, it was something around there, he was a skinny kid) and Murray goes, "Just pretend it's all in your feet." And that was that!

I guess it's not the same at all. Never mind. Oh, but after the talk, I asked Murray to sign my Rushmore poster — he smelled like peaches and told me that he's looking to act in a movie about angels. So, aspiring screenwriters, write that movie and ask Bill Murray to star in it! And then give me at least 50 percent of the proceeds because GODDAMMIT I MADE YOU.


Denzel Washington's acting advice for daughter: Be like Viola Davis [Grio]