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Viola Davis to star as trailblazing Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm for Amazon

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In a move that’s sure to have the Golden Globes and the Emmys shaken, Amazon has acquired the rights to a Shirley Chisholm biopic starring Oscar winner Viola Davis as the trailblazing U.S. Congresswoman.

The announcement of The Fighting Shirley Chisholm comes only days after Davis and husband Julius Tennon’s JuVee Productions announced a first-look feature production deal with Amazon; Davis and Tennon will be working alongside Stephanie Allain (Hustle & Flow) and Mel Jones of Homegrown Pictures to produce the film.


Director Maggie Betts will be tasked with bringing Emmy-winning writer Adam Countee’s (The Mindy Project) screenplay to life. Countee has reportedly long been interested in telling the story of U.S. Representative Shirley Chisholm, who, as well as the first black woman elected to the U.S. Congress, was both the first woman and the first person of color to seek a major American political party’s nomination for president. In addition to being a politician who served from local to national levels of government, Chisholm was also an educator, activist, and author.

Davis seems to be in pursuit of the title “Hardest Working Woman in Show Business,” as she can currently be seen in Steve McQueen’s heist thriller Widows as well as on ABC’s How to Get Away With Murder. Her role as Shirley Chisholm will be her second for Amazon Studios after the comedy series Troupe Zero, coming in January 2019, where she will star alongside Jim Gaffigan and Allison Janney.

Davis’ snot bubble has yet to comment on whether it will be making an appearance in the upcoming film.

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