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Regina King Portrays Pioneering Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm in Upcoming Netflix Biopic (Video)

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Actress Regina King takes on the role of Shirley Chisholm in the upcoming Netflix biopic titled “Shirley,” with promotional photos released by Netflix on Monday.

In 1972, Chisholm made history as the first woman elected to Congress. Not only did she break ground as the first woman to run for president, but she also became the inaugural Black candidate for the Democratic party, representing New York’s 12th congressional district from 1969 to 1983.

Regina King, who collaborated on the Chisholm project for 15 years with her younger sister, actress Reina King, emphasized Chisholm’s pioneering spirit in an interview with Harper’s Bazaar magazine. King remarked, “What she did was so pioneering. She was a true maverick, and, you know, we use this term all the time, but she was a true first.”

Born Shirley Anita St. Hill, Chisholm faced challenges in her personal life, experiencing two miscarriages with her husband, private investigator Conrad O. Chisholm. Despite these hardships, she entered politics as a campaign worker in the 1950s and made a significant impact.

Chisholm’s journey into politics faced initial skepticism. While running for the New York State Assembly in 1964, a Brooklyn resident questioned her presence, stating that politics was a realm for men. Unfazed, Chisholm explained her commitment to improving her community, eventually winning the man’s support.

A memorable piece of advice from Chisholm to political commentator Donna Brazile resonates: “If you wait for a man to give you a seat, you’ll never have one! If they don’t give you a seat at the table, bring in a folding chair.”

Shirley Chisholm passed away on January 1, 2005, at the age of 80, leaving behind a legacy of courage and trailblazing achievements.

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