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Unbossed! Regina King & John Ridley Honor Shirley Chisholm’s Life & Legacy, Talk Netflix Movie On ElectionLine Podcast

Editor’s note: Running until the final general election results come in, the Deadline ElectionLine podcast spotlights the 2024 campaign and the blurred lines between politics and entertainment in modern America. Hosted by Deadline’s political editor Ted Johnson and executive editor Dominic Patten, the podcast features commentary and interviews with top lawmakers and entertainment figures. At the same time, you can follow all the news in Biden & Trump rematch and more on the ElectionLine hub on Deadline.

“She’s one of those politicians that actually gave a damn about the people, her constituents and the people of the country that she is a citizen of,” Regina King says of former Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm on today’s Deadline ElectionLine podcast – as you can hear above.

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Perfectly timed for the 2024 election and the pivotal juncture America finds itself at, the King starring, and John Ridley directed Shirley launches today on Netflix.

“This is a legendary person,” Oscar winner King declares. “If we don’t …protect that legacy and honor that legacy, then we didn’t do our job,” King adds of a project she and her sister and fellow producer Reina King have fought for 15 years to bring to the screen.

Representing New York’s 12th congressional district for seven terms starting in 1969, Chisholm was the first Black woman elected to Congress. In 1972, with a true grassroots campaign, the self-proclaimed unbought and unbossed candidate also became the first woman and the first African American to make a serious bid for the presidential nomination of either the Democratic Party or the GOP.

Bold moves that challenged stereotypes, party bosses and inspired generations that followed, including one Barack Obama. In 2015, the 44rd POTUS posthumously awarded the seven-term Congresswoman, who passed away in 2005, the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the nation’s highest civilian award.

“You have to remember, Shirley ran for president 52 years ago,” states fellow Oscar winner Ridley. “It’s unfortunate that 52 years later, a lot of the things that Shirley was fighting for still have not been delivered to the larger electorate,” the American Crime creator and co-host of Deadline’s Doc Talk podcast laments.

(L-R) Reina King, John Ridley & Regina King attend Netflix’s ‘Shirley’ Premiere at LA’s Egyptian Theatre ( (Credit: Charley Gallay/Getty Images for Netflix)
(L-R) Reina King, John Ridley & Regina King attend Netflix’s ‘Shirley’ Premiere at LA’s Egyptian Theatre ( (Credit: Charley Gallay/Getty Images for Netflix)

Revealing much of their collaborative process in conversation today, King and Ridley both noted the importance of Congresswoman Barbara Lee in the film and as a part of Shirley Chisholm’s legacy. The longtime Representative from Oakland and former Senate candidate offered her own perspective on the role her mentor played in her life and for the America of 2024 – as you can see from the Shirley premiere in Hollywood this week.

Along with Regina King, Shirley also stars the late, great Lance Reddick (John Wick franchise), Lucas Hedges (Manchester by the Sea), André Holland (Passing), Terrence Howard (Empire), Christina Jackson (Swagger), Michael Cherrie (Home Again), Dorian Missick (For Life), Amirah Vann (Underground), W. Earl Brown (Deadwood) and Ethan Jones Romero. The film is produced by Regina King and Reina King for Royal Ties Productions, Ridley, Anikah McLaren and Elizabeth Haggard for Participant. Jeff Skoll and Ted Gidlow serve as executive producers.

Also on the podcast today: A major focus of campaign coverage is now on who Donald Trump will pick to be his running mate. Marco Rubio, Tulsi Gabbard, Kristi Noem, Tim Scott and J.D. Vance are a few of the names floated in a flurry of stories or reports, even as it may be in Trump’s interest to keep the suspense going for as long as possible. Honestly, though, looking at the rise and fall of Mike Pence at fickle Trump’s hand, what’s really in it for any of the contenders when you think about it?

Donald Trump
Donald Trump

Meanwhile, Trump’s new lawsuit against ABC News is the latest in a long line of defamation cases the former Celebrity Apprentice host has filed against media outlets. All of the lawsuits have one thing in common — Trump has lost, as most of the cases have been quickly dismissed. The ABC lawsuit is over This Week anchor George Stephanopoulos’ characterization of a jury’s determination that Trump was liable for the sexual assault of E. Jean Carroll.

This comes as the past and soon-to-be present GOP presidential nominee faces a March 25 deadline to come up with a $464 million bond in his New York fraud case. Trump’s lawyers have already said their client can’t get the money. Empire State Attorney General Letitia James has also already said she’ll start seizing Trump’s assets if he can’t pay up by Monday.

Take a listen.

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