Monday, February 6, 2017

28 Days Of Black Women In Horror: Vanessa Williams

Vanessa Williams (1963- )

Candyman (1992)
Born and raised in Brooklyn, New York, Vanessa Williams became a member of the New York City Opera's Children's Chorus at age 11. After graduating from New York's famed High School of Performing Arts, she earned a Bachelor's degree in theatre and business from Marymount Manhattan College. A member of all three actors unions, Vanessa kept busy striking a balance as a professional actress and college student. Her New York stage credits grew to include the Lincoln Center production of Death and the King's Horseman and the Broadway productions of Sarafina and Mule Bone. Vanessa arrived in L.A. in September 1991, "just to check it out." A month later she was cast as single mother Anna-Marie McCoy in the horror film, Candyman. She made her west coast move official in January 1992, and became a media darling as one of the stars in the Fox TV hit, Melrose Place. Vanessa is also a talented writer who has written a collection of poetry and prose titled Shine. Her poems and essays have also appeared in Essence magazine. As filmmaker, Vanessa wrote, directed, and produced the short film, Dense (2004), which aired on Showtime television and was a favorite among film festival-goers. As a singer/songwriter, Vanessa performed her original melodies in the films Dense and the award-winning short Driving Fish (2002). (Source)

About Candyman (1992)

Anne-Marie McCoy (Williams) was the pulse, the conscious, the astute commentary on the race and class tensions that beat through Candyman's entirety as a narrative. She was much more than just a mother who was a pawn for the catalyst of Helen's arc, which I gotta be honest, I feel compelled to unpack more because it still troubles me that this film is still considered a 'Black horror' film. I do not. Because it still reads as centered around a white woman 'do-gooder' tip toeing around the urban jungle in search of the Black Evil (Tony Todd's master performance as the title character) who redeems herself and then, ironically becomes a monstrous legend by way of her relationships with the Black people in the film. I digress. And that's not to say that I don't love this film and its strong performances all around. Including Williams.

Anne-Marie: You say you're doing a study? What 'you gonna study? How we're bad? We steal? We gang-bang? We're ALL on drugs right?... We ain't all like them assholes downstairs, you know.

Other Genre Performances

Dr. April Sommers, Ice Spiders (2007)
Dr. Violet Whims, Total Recall 2070 (1999)
Denise Clements, The Pretender (1998)

Follow the #Blackwomeninhorror & #WiHM8 hashtags all month long!
Blogger Template Created by pipdig