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Viola Davis may have been a strong critical contender to take home the Best Actress Oscar at the 2012 Academy Awards, but if you ask The Help star, she had an inkling Sunday would be Meryl Streep's big night.

Declared the victor in the hotly-contested category, Streep, 62, beat out Davis for her portrayal of British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher in The Iron Lady. It was her third win and seventeenth nomination. "When you called my name, I had this feeling I could hear half of America going, 'Oh, come on, why her again?'...But whatever!" an emotional Streep joked once she made her way to the podium to accept her trophy.

Recovering from her loss at the Governor's Ball, Davis was overheard telling her husband, Julius Tennon, that Streep's victory was well-deserved. "I had a feeling that would happen," said Davis, who was joined in the Best Actress category by Michelle Williams (My Week With Marilyn), Rooney Mara (The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo) and Glenn Close (Albert Nobbs).

Dazzling on the red carpet in a custom Vera Wang emerald green corseted faille gown with floral crystal applique and draped chiffon pleated skirt, Davis ditched her trademark wig in favor of a close-cropped 'do.

Getting ready for her big night out was a cinch for Davis, who told Us Weekly it was "so much faster" pulling her look together thanks to her natural hairstyle.

"I wanted to step into who I was. I wanted to be bold," Davis, 46, told Us before Sunday's show. "I feel like this is the time to do it and let me tell you something, the red carpet is daunting enough, I think that if I were armed with the confidence of who I was, all I need was God and my confidence and my [adopted] baby [daughter Genesis]."