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Viola Davis Will Not Be Buying Her Daughter An Expensive Phone For Christmas

"Do you know how much an iPhone costs?"
Viola Davis with her daughter Genesis Tennon at the "Troop Zero" premiere on Jan. 13.
Viola Davis with her daughter Genesis Tennon at the "Troop Zero" premiere on Jan. 13.

Viola Davis’s 10-year-old already knows there’s no Santa Claus.

In an appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live last week, the Oscar-winning actress explained her daughter Genesis Tennon’s attitude towards make-believe: Davis quoted her daughter’s utter rejection of the Santa story:

“Mommy, I know Santa is the guy they hire at the mall every year who has a big stomach and a white beard. Don’t even play that,” Genesis said, according to Davis, who added that her daughter is “10 going on 30.”

But that doesn’t mean Genesis didn’t make a Christmas list. For the first time this year, she did write out a list of the expensive presents she wants — but her mom swiftly shut her down.

“She had things on that list where I had to say, ‘Let me tell you something, okay Genesis?,’” Davis told Kimmel, widening her eyes for emphasis. ”‘I don’t care how much money you think Mommy has, 98 per cent of the stuff on this list, you’re not gonna get.’”

The exchange takes place around the 2:55 mark below. Story continues after video.

Genesis wanted an iPhone and a camera on a tripod, Davis said — gifts that come with a pretty hefty price tag.

“I said, ‘Do you know how much an iPhone costs?’” Davis told Kimmel. “I don’t care how nice you are. You’re not getting that iPhone, you’re not getting that camera with the tripod on it.”

Laughing, she added: “That’s the kind of mommy I am.”

Viola Davis with her husband Julius Tennon and their daughter Genesis at the premiere of "The Angry Birds Movie 2" on Aug. 10, 2019.
Viola Davis with her husband Julius Tennon and their daughter Genesis at the premiere of "The Angry Birds Movie 2" on Aug. 10, 2019.

While some celebrities lavish their children with absurd displays of their wealth, Davis is setting her daughter up to have a much healthier relationship to money. As irritated as Genesis might be with her mom right now, she’ll be better off learning not to take a certain lifestyle for granted.

Davis also told Kimmel that her favourite Christmas song is “Little Drummer Boy.” Presumably, Genesis will hear that song quite a bit this week, although not through iPhone speakers.

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