Viola Davis to Star as Shirley Chisholm in Amazon Project

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Oscar-winning actress Viola Davis is gearing up to play groundbreaking politician Shirley Chisholm in a film for Amazon Studios.

The company said Thursday that Davis has signed on to star in and produce the project about Chisholm, who was the first black woman ever elected to the United States Congress and the first woman to seek the Democratic Party’s presidential nomination.

Viola Davis-Shirley Chisholm Project

This combination photo shows actress Viola Davis, during the Toronto International Film Festival in Toronto on Sept. 9, 2018, left, and Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm, D-N.Y., the first black woman elected to Congress, in 1971.(AP Photo)

She represented New York’s 12th District in the House of Representatives from 1969 to 1983, and sought the presidential nomination in 1972. Chisholm died in 2005 at age 80.

Maggie Betts will direct Davis in “The Fighting Shirley Chisholm” off of a screenplay from “Silicon Valley” writer Adam Countee.

The Hollywood trade website Deadline first reported the news.

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