Regina King to Play Shirley Chisholm, First Black Congresswoman in New Film

Regina King at the 92nd Academy Awards held at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, USA on February 9, 2020. — Photo by PopularImages

Regina King will star as trailblazing politician Shirley Chisholm in a new film based on the life of the nation’s first Black Congresswoman. King will also serve as a producer on the film.

The upcoming biopic titled Shirley will focus on Chisholm’s run for president in 1972, and will be written and directed by 12 Years a Slave screenwriter John Ridley, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

An exclusive agreement with the Chisholm Estate allowed the filmmakers to have access to the late educator and author’s life story.

“Shirley Chisholm’s fearless determination has been an inspiration to so many of us, and with this film we hope to inspire many generations to come,” King said in a statement.

Both Academy Award winners King and Ridley have worked together in the past on the ABC television anthology series American Crime, which Ridley created.

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Shirley will be produced by Participant Media, which also produced last year’s documentary John Lewis: Good Trouble and the Oscar-winning documentary American Factory. Jeff Skoll and Anikah McLaren will executive produce the film.

King’s most recent project as director of One Night in Miami earned her an historic Golden Globe nomination for best director.

Ridley directed an episode of Godfather of Harlem in 2019. He is also one of the executive producers of the series.