Viola Davis & Julius Tennon

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Push businesses have had to be flexible this year from working remotely to pivoting their business models for long term survival for example performing arts companies screaming stage shows measles and concerts online. But if you're in charge of hiring for your business. These pivots have made your job even more challenging. Thankfully there's one place you can count on to make hiring easier. Ziprecruiter dot com slash. Dpd ziprecruiter's technology finds the right people for your job and invites them to apply. It's no wonder that four out of five employers who post on ziprecruiter get a quality candidate within the first day. And right now you can try ziprecruiter for free at ziprecruiter dot com slash. Dpd that's ziprecruiter dot com slash dpd. Hi i'm phil donahue and marlo thomas we've been married for over forty years but when i was younger wanted to be married it didn't seem possible for two people to live together for life and you were half right. Nearly half of all marriages end in divorce. The let about the ones at last. What's the secret sauce. I have no idea but the best way to find out is to talk with some long married couples. You know like a double date and so we did. We made dates with couples. We admire actors. Athletes musicians journalists. And you know what. I love about a double date. Everybody talks everybody remembers and you get a real sense of who this couple is together. Exactly take by all davis and julius tenant what a couple here are two great actors with all the talent and none of the eagle. The first feeling you get from them is welcome remember. Julius was standing outside on the street in front of their house just to be sure we didn't get lost such a great. Hello told us a lot about them right from the start. My big thing me. Julius is where the fun we have the best parties on getting to know you. Let's go workout for. Should we settled down at their dinner table with these tall comfy chairs that you could just sink into and we started talking. I felt an immediate bond with like me. She never could imagine herself with a life partner. I want to get married either. I never had any visions of walking down an aisle with the white dress. I admired every woman who was alone and happy and who had a lot of boyfriends. I was a narcissistic artist. That's what i was right. And then then. I read somewhere that you prayed for husband. When i was up at williamstown theatre festival i was doing the raisin in the sun and a friend of mine said why you alone and i felt like oh my god. I almost started crying and my eyes were welling up. He was like. Is there a reason why you don't have a relationship. I said while. I guess i've just never found anyone who loved me. You know. and then. He was the one joseph edwards i know because he just got married got married. He said go into your room. This is what i want you to do. And get on your knees and you ask god for bubble bio psycho. Although on fire. To jesus person and you did i did. I did and i. There was a specific prayer. Right that you mean very specific because he told me to be specific and literally. I was like okay. This is what i want now. He really doesn't have to be black. But i want him to be black. I want him to look like a football player. Because i love football players and one the beat from the south. 'cause i love countrymen and i kinda would appreciate it. He's already been married. he's already had kids. Because i don't want that pressure. And i want him to be like maybe very spiritual church going funny. You know maybe someone who is an artist. Tuesay's got those artistic sensibility. And i met julius three and a half weeks later three and a half weeks three and a half weeks. How on city of angels stephen bochco 's city of angels. We actually met during the pilot episode. I was dating a girl. I was really trying to run away monster. And so when i met viola i gave her my card and then she called and then we went on our first date and twenty years later here we are and i felt like i had done all the work before. Then i was in therapy. I finally went to there. Because i had screen actors guild. Insure i so. When julius came along. I remember telling my therapist. You know this guy gave me a car in his really good looking and she was like all okay because you could tell us you maybe a little bored with what i was talking about a talk about something else so and i said this guy gave cardon he. Oh he invited me to church and she was like have you called them back. I said no. I don't know 'cause i'm struck. I gotta get my created. I gotta get my life in order. She said call him. Wow and and i said yeah but you know what. They may be something wrong with him. She's like there's something wrong with everyone viola. There's something wrong with view. It took me six weeks to call him so nervous. I was having anxiety attacks. La and then me finally called them. I said he's never gonna remember me and he remembered me and i remember. He invited me to his place where he worked and the openness emotional availability. I never had that before usually men. It's like okay. How do you feel how do you feel about me. You love me. Do you not love me. Want to be not julius. You'd never had to guess. Mom did a good job. She really did. Mama told me to respect. Women knew that there was a certain kind of decorum around the way you needed to treat. Women feel said to me one time. What do you have so much against. Marriage i well i think that people lose courteousness and i. I really don't like that. I don't wanna be treated in a discourteous dismissive way and we do that for each other. I mean i'll say to him up to get you a sweat. It's cold out here or he'll say that to me. There's a concern for the other person. I went to an all boy catholic high school and one of the things that was given to us. Were dancing lessons and they taught us know you. Don't call the woman you place your hand gently on her back and you'll be sure to return her to wherever it was when you asked her to dance being taught grace. And that's a lovely i. I will talk girl school. We both catholic management to so. And i think i think sharing not so sharing religion or faith but sharing the values of that when people ask me what i. I think. Our marriages lasted at that. Will we define certain important words the same like what's fair and unfair. Yes what's acceptable and unacceptable. It feels says to me. That's not fair. i know. I know what it means. I don't say what do you mean it is. I mean i got it. You have to allow the other person you know there say as always kind of distinctive agreeing to disagree and it's okay but you know we try to get around that thing without it being an impediment what it is. We always discuss you know and for some people. It works where the angry at each other. Because this whole tone here can say some things that you can never take back so you have to be careful with this but some folks have dude like sleep on it. We never go to sleep on anger. Deify how do you fight on the door slam. I say yeah. I'm kind of the guy that just goes away. I just go away fast. I'll adore and then it's nothing like nothing. Yeah i'm the chaser followed him till i get it too. He's he's just getaway. No because i think how you fight and how you come back from a fight. It is a big line in the sand. Gotta know how to do that to my big thing. My advice about marriage that i give to all of my friends. I say you marriages start when you walk down the aisle you're marriage starts when you look over at a person that you love more than anything in this something about him. You just see. Just one character trait just a glimpse. And you're thinking oh man that's gonna drive me crazy. I don't know i can deal with this. You just bring know if i could deal with this and the next minute you like you know what but i love him. I'm gonna stick it out. What is it that when you marriage star. that's great. Tell us what it is with julia. The drives you crazy. I know i can tell you what drives me crazy. But i know a lot of things. Drive me crazy about julius Here's a little. Ocd or you know. I'm let's just say familiar with this issue. I know. I know. I'm sorry but i think it should be called obsessive compulsive order that drives me a little bit crazy to people like you may never get to use of slide need. Is guilty this all this mess on the floor. I'm like oh my god and be to walk into my office talking like crazy about everything and straightening up this book. Getting this magazine over here where along you know. I said things down. And that's where they are. I mean you can tell where i've been in the house. He had oranges over here. Because that little orange cast is there. He had a ginger ale over there because what it is if he ever murdered anybody. I like my life got better as soon as we got together. And and i mean that to my life did get better at bad credit when i met julius. I didn't know anything. I had my apartment in new york. That was the ceiling. Was caving in because it was rent stabilized. The pipes had burst psycho. Get anyone to sublet it. And then i was here doing a tv show. Not the pay rent here. And i was sending my family money. I was just all over the place. Julius came in he was making my life. It's like the this is what we could do me and you can move together. We could share the rent. And i was like all mike. I started saving my money. This is how you build up credit. I was like all really so all of a sudden. I'm like saving money. My credit got better. Shouldn't have to clean. I mean i know how to clean baseboards. I know how to wash blinds. I can do it all you know. Viola wasn't used to doing that kind of thing. And i remember the very first time she stayed with me and then i went to the bathroom after she left because she had to go to work and i went to the top. They were off everything. The toothpaste the moisturizer. Every i'm like going my god. It seemed like the battlement been blown up. She came back and she saw him bat. And sit what you do that. What you put everything. But that's just what i do. And i said listen honey you'll ever have to worry about it. Just do what you do. And i'll do what i do or and that's the way we rolled ever since and so i might take her a thirty minutes to an hour to do. I can do and fifteen. She's a slavi that's-that's us loud. I always say about feel is a man who doesn't know the meaning of the word hampshire no idea what and i've always fixing and better better over the years took her awhile but i still do things. Yeah so then. How long did it take to get to. Seriousness are moving in together. It seem like we just live together right away. It felt like i always. I always well. Yeah because he brought his close to my apartment. I loved it. There was nothing about it that i questioned. It was easy. It was right and we had so much fun. It was the first time when i was coming from new york with three four roommates. Yeah you know lip living at juilliard and the dorms. And then finally here. I was with an apartment in los angeles and it's like all of a sudden. We had a christmas tree. It's like i had a christmas tree in years. We had thanksgiving remember. Thanks thanks giving. We must have so much. You need someone food for ten people and we ate it in four days all amazes me how people know how to trust another person. I mean we wait to. I mean he came to see me. The first night i was had moved around. I was doing promotion of a movie so i was in chicago promoting my movie on his show and then i went on to denver and two other shows around the country and he called me and he said I'd like to see you. where are you. i'm in denver. Is denver very far from chicago. And he said no not far at all so he comes from denver to to have dinner with me and we do that together was it that was it does go and you think to yourself. How did i not know that he would take out a knife and kill. You know i mean you can get into vulnerable place with the person you say. Well you know. I've always thought of that as the act of faith. My goodness well. Relationships are in their faith and vulnerabilities is the ultimate you know level a courage and bravery and i felt like you felt awfully vulnerable in our early days to be dating an actress. Remember what you said to me. I sure do one do. I know you're not act. And it never dawned on me. And i thought it was such an innocent dear question like when you cry that you crying like you try got. I'm great memorizer. Was we all are actors We wrote our own. The house and my friends were with him at the hotel saying he was walking around the courtyard memorizing memories memories and then i saw him. I learned when i got it. So comes time for the wedding do our vows and he does his vows beautifully and i go to do my vows and i just choked it was like when you hear about stagefright. I just couldn't do it. And i and i was crying and i was just. It was just a mess later. Got back to the hotel after the wedding and he said i can't believe you didn't learn our vows is that i know the vows rattled them off right. He said well. Why could you know today. He said you're an actress. I said it wasn't an actress today. I was terrified bride. I was in a state of panic. Now you know how to know that. I'm not a good actress. Won a a real person even remember my lines which is actually good. We'll have more after a quick break weight loss. It feels like a constant cycle like my body is always working against pushing back on all of my progress. I learned that anytime. I lose weight. My body tries to gain it right back. Finally i discovered. It's not entirely my fault. I know healthy. Eating and exercise are important but they may not be enough so i talked to my healthcare provider about whether a prescription medicine could help me lose weight and maintain it together. We made a plan to tackle this a plan to help. Lower my risk of future weight related health issues like heart disease joining me and make a change for the better talk to your healthcare provider about treatment options to manage. Your weight for a lot of us are home is now more than just our home. I mean ours has turned into a podcast studio. But if you're growing your business home might also be where you're doing you're hiring that's ziprecruiter comes in ziprecruiter makes hiring easier because you can do it. All from one place ziprecruiter dot com slash d d ziprecruiter's technology identifies the most qualified people for your job. And if you're really interested in a candidate you can even invite them to apply for your job with one click. Ziprecruiter sends them an email from you and you stand out from the competition. In fact four out of five employers. Who post on ziprecruiter get a quality candidate within the first day. And right now you can try ziprecruiter for free at ziprecruiter dot com slash d d. That's ziprecruiter dot com slash. Dpd we're back to our interview with viola davis and julius tenant and i wanted to know what are you get from each other that you can't get from anyone else or what i get what i can tell you. One of the big things. I get from her as i can tell her anything and she listens and she listened she takes in. She's always interested in my wellbeing and happiness. And julius has julius has the capacity to love not everyone has the capacity to love. You know one of the things that julius did when we first got together is he said the you know you've never had a parent who died. I find that really interesting. I was like oh yeah my both. My parents are still here. He was like all the. It's gonna be hard and you know my parents at that point. We were raising several of my siblings children because of drugs and all of that and julia said be. Let me tell you something. When parents have a hard life they can go from pretty good health really bad health in a very short period of time he in and they don't have any resources so Do they have any insurance or whatever because when it happens. It's so devastating. You so kind of inundated with it. You can't make choices. No one else in the family could make choices. So i remember we got insurance on my parents i remember. My dad passed from pancreatic cancer and the first person i called was julius. I was devastated. 'cause i was there hospice when he passed. I was out of my mind. And i called julius. I said he's gone and julie says okay. Oh the sorry. I'm so sorry okay now hands what you gotta do. You could hang up from me. You pick up the phone. You could call the insurance company you give them. All the information with a funeral home is going to be. They will take care of everything. I will get on the plane and i will be there as soon as i can step by. Step that that person who literally has a capacity to love has a really the capacity to really have your back in all of the deep ugly messy but beautiful things happen in your life. that's the elixir. As as far as i'm concerned and that's everything with him together before you got married four years there was you know there wasn't fear from me. It was just that i wanted to. You know be free of all my debt and so we got married. We could start off on even footing and she. We gather. we're going to be together so you're dead my dad we do this together and i remember not really saying anything that night and then the next day i told her i said you know what you girl for me. That's very honorable idea. That i want to be outta debt. I wanna be responsible. I wanna right into this. You know without having to drag. Roy mesfin's right and by ola and julius so connected we wondered what throws them out of sync. We couldn't help dig a little jealous. I do think not really. But i think it's good to have a little jealousy but not have a little jealousy because i always pinpoint those women who are very questionable. They may come off really nice. But i always feel like we have a radar for those women. I don't think men do. So i'm like that. And then i'm very very articulate about those. I said she can't come to the house. I'm more party everywhere. Everywhere i go i can just go. She's really more introverted. But i can walk in a room. And i can just start having a conversation with anybody anywhere in the subway station anywhere just comes easy for me. I am an introvert. I am like maybe a step away from being a straight up loner. I love my alone time. I love getting lost. I could drive to you know what theater watch of you know a foreign movie. Eat my sushi by myself with my book. And that's it. I spent most of my time alone. I haven't had a lot of boyfriends. It'd been term so when i got married to have to answer to someone to have to say okay. This is where i'm going to be was very difficult for me. It's like i almost needed a woman cave some like and you know. The invention of cell phones is that just killed me so that was one thing that i felt like. I was going to have to give up my independence. You know. i've been wanting to give up my name. I was like oh. I don't know if i could give up my i think that commit you to a stable long-term mary. I do more than i think. The people that are in danger of the people. I can't live without her. Yeah breathless to get married are the ones that come boom weeks about stress. Who how do you handle stress. We had to really learn work on that because in the beginning when he'd panic i'd panic and it was a disaster so we had to really work on somebody once said that a good marriage is where both people don't go crazy at the same time. First thing he told me is kind. Always one of those things were between us. Viola does tend to get more stressed out I had so much stress living in los angeles. I mean i just didn't understand how to connect with people. I felt like my funky. Look my funky ways me not really caring about being been acute or i just didn't have all of that stuff going on i. Just i felt like it didn't fit in and just new york was my city. You know i was. I never had delusions of becoming a star. Nothing i never had anything. I was a journeyman actor. And then i met. Julius and i did go back for six months to a broadway show was came in the second tony center. She gave me goosebumps from the top of my head to my toes in at the end of the show. I went backstage gonna sit. You're gonna win the tony award for this. I was sure of it. Speaking of rewards you wanted to ask about that speech any speech. Oh pitcher mike. Harriet tubman and you were just very political. And now we're told me speech you know that she talks about having a dream about a line right and white women their hands outstretch you know reaching for her to come over the line but then she wakes up and she says she can't ever get to that line she couldn't ever. It's always so heartbreaking. You know moments like that where you know julius just having him in my life. It's like my way of soda. Saving myself of what i what i feel. This is just. What i feel is that i don't like about l. A. riches trying to retain authenticity trying to retain something about me. That is just myself. This is just how. I felt about being out here. The everything was an audition. Even friendships was an audition. Yeah that you had to sort a pass a test in order to be you know even be the cool friend rubbing the cool mom but you know even with. Does your kid go to school right. And if it's not the hip funky school that all the celebrities have their kids at then. It's like you're out that that's my protest. I feel it is. It's like that's my pro-tech no it's like everything we've been with how to get away with murder taking my wig off. Everything is my rebellion idea. I love how supportive he is of her work. Know something yes you do. I guess we see you as stabilize. Hell i mean you guys are solid and talking to you. I am impressed with the insight you brought to hear union not everybody. Has that one of the things i did before i met. Julius was in therapy. Because i was not a great girlfriend. I had a lot of. I would say like bad boyfriends. But i was attracted to them for a reason so and i remember a friend of mine said viola. Why do you keep meeting assholes. And i said i don't know. Isn't that something. I kept meeting these assholes. She said did you ever think it was you and i remember. That was my big. Aha moment and i think that's the best thing that i brought into. My marriage is to really Ask myself what am i contributing to it. Or what am i doing to destroy any moment. you know it's like my first therapist said what she said was viola. Whenever you're on automatic in your marriage you're not in it you know and so that that's been my personal responsibility not to put everything on him not to say. Make me happy. Julius make the marriage good. Julius being the great husband julius. I also have to step up right okay. I'm going to give you one last. Okay my husband is looking like you've already t i. I could go on forever really good. I'm so fascinated by but if there was a young couple here about to be married. Is there something you wanna tell them to make their marriage. Last the big thing i would tell them is that you have to listen to the other person. I mean you really do. You have to really listen. Let it land because once she stopped listening. You're not you're not there. You're not any not listening right. You know that's a big one for me. let let you. I would say that commitment is love. And what i mean by that is. You can't operate separately with your own joy in go on your own path and your own road if if in the end it doesn't honor the big umbrella of the alternate commitment. The ultimate commitment between biolab davison julius ten and it was wonderful for us to experience it. Until next time. I'm phil donahue marlo. Thomas your lovely really. Oh well thank you very thank you time. This is been yeah. You've got to invite us. One of those fabulous party doubleday production of pushkin industries. The show was created by us and produced by sarah lilly. Michael bahari is associate producer. Musical adaptations of it had to be you. Buy sell wagons infinite marlow and i are executive producers along with me alot bell and lee tol. Mola trump pushkin special things to jacob. Weisberg malcolm glad well. Heather fain josh. Nour's carly mcclary. Eric sandler emily rustic jason gambrill. Paul williams and bruce kluger. If you like our show please remember to share rate and review. Thanks for listening finally spring. And i'm saying goodbye snow. Hello adventure and during the honda dream garage spring event. You can get epic deals on your favorite honda model ready to get rugged and take the off road in an all wheel drive honda. Suv like the crv hr v. Pilot asked or redesigned rich. I want to take spring road trip. The checkout fuel-efficient turbocharged civic or cord say goodbye to winter and hello to a new honda. 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