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Viola Davis Has the Cutest First Date Story with Julius Tennon: Inside Their Relationship of Almost Two Decades

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Actress, Viola Davis, and her husband, Julius Tennon have been together for almost two decades. Their romance kicked off with a beautiful first date, which turned out as a blessing for the duo.

For eighteen years, actress Viola Davis has enjoyed marital bliss, owing to her marriage to actor, Julius Tennon. The twosome stands out as one of the most enviable couples in Hollywood.

Even more enviable is the onset of their romance, which featured the most beautiful first date story ever. Every detail of Viola Davis’ relationship with Tennon seems torn out of the pages of a fairy tale book.

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Interestingly, the “How To Get Away With Murder” star describes her beau as “an answered prayer,” and rightly so. For once upon a time, the Hollywood legend’s love life was chaotic or non-existent, akin to that of her onscreen alter ego, Annalise Keating.

Then came Tennon at the nick of time. The 67-year-old easily swept the actress off her feet, working his way into her life for good. And the rest is history.


Viola Davis’s husband, Julius Tennon is an American actor, known for his roles on “Rizzoli & Isles,” “Lonesome Dove” and “Book III.” He hailed from Travis County, Texas, and has two children from his previous relationship.


The lovebirds first met in 2000, on the set of the short-lived medical drama, “City Of Angels.” 

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Recounting how it all began, Davis once admitted to being the loneliest woman in the world at some point in her life. On the advice of a friend, the star prayed to God for a husband, specifically, “a big black man from the south who looked like a football player.”

She also prayed for her prospective match to be emotionally available, older than her, already have kids, and love God more than himself.

Three and a half weeks later, their first meeting happened, and voila! He had all the qualities she prayed for in a prospective husband, and made a first good impression. Tennon offered Davis his card at the end of their shared scene, along with an invitation to take her on a guided trip to the Santa Monica Pier.


Despite accepting his business card, Davis hesitated to call him for six weeks. In a later interview, Davis revealed she spent those six weeks working out her personal issues, particularly the anxiety walking down the streets of Los Angeles roused in her due to her impoverished childhood and humble beginnings.

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Following constant prompts from friends, Davis finally summoned the willpower to call Tennon and they hooked up. They had their first date at church. 

Tennon revealed honest details about himself and his past to the star on the first date, which admittedly scared her. And after a night of candid conversations, the father of three dropped her off at home. It was his gesture afterward that left her captivated. Recounting the magical experience on “Black Love,” Davis disclosed:

“He just said ‘You are a very beautiful and nice woman, and it was a pleasure spending time with you.’ And he shook my hand.”

Twenty minutes later, Tennon called after driving a few blocks, to reiterate how much he enjoyed their time together, and how beautiful she was. The actor called again upon arriving at his abode, to inform her he was home, and further sing praises of her beauty. Then they called it a night.


Charming the iconic actress was only the first phase in Viola Davis and Julius Tennon’s relationship. They went on several dates afterward and soon made their romance official.

In 2003, the couple tied the knot in an intimate ceremony at their home, graced by fifteen guests. They have since remained the ultimate sweethearts. Speaking on how they made their marriage work for years, Davis admitted that inculcating little acts of kindness in their everyday lives has helped them scale through.

The twosome renewed their vows in 2011, making the ceremony a grand one, packed to capacity with several Hollywood icons.


Over the years, the twosome has sent netizens raving with envy with heartfelt tributes to each other in honor of their wedding anniversaries marked each year on June 23.

For their fourteenth wedding anniversary in 2017, Viola Davis and Julius Tennon took the festivity to the gram. The icon shared a pic of them from their vow renewal ceremony, alongside a caption that gushed about how sweeter her life had become since meeting her husband.

Again in 2018, Davis celebrated their 15th anniversary with a photo of them donning black and white outfits as they posed together, all smiles. She accompanied the photo with a loved-up message, in honor of the best 15 years of her life.

Their seventeenth anniversary was no different. Viola Davis marked the big day by uploading a photo of them together, posing alongside their daughter, Genesis Tennon at the vow renewal ceremony.

Via caption, Davis raved about how sweet her life became since landing herself the “most beautiful man in the world” seventeen years ago.


While Tennon already had two kids from previous relationships, the actress became a first-time mom in 2011 after welcoming daughter, Genesis Tennon. Viola Davis and her husband turned to adoption to expand their family.

They adopted Genesis as a baby in October 2011. Following the adoption, Davis graced an interview where she admitted that Genesis represented a new beginning in her life.


Davis landed the role of Annalise Keating, the lead character on “How To Get Away With Murder” in 2014. For six seasons, she portrayed the tough, smart defense attorney and college professor who became wrapped up in a murder plot with her students.

The Annalise role player admitted that snagging the role was a huge turning point in her life. It gave her the opportunity to see all her womanhood and appreciate herself, her looks, and her sexuality.

Davis said goodbye to the powerful female character after the Shonda Rhimes-produced series went off-air in 2019.

Although the icon has since starred in other notable movies like “Blackhat,” “First Ladies,” “Custody,” “Fences” and “Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom,” the world would forever know her as Annalise Keating from “HTGAWM.”

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