Viola Davis' career took off when she decided to put her ''authentic self'' first.

The 53-year-old star is the first black actor to have won an Academy Award, an Emmy Award, and a Tony Award for acting - and while her rise to success has been ''gradual'' she is now confident enough to ''create [her] own party''.

She said: ''It's gradual, gradual and then you're there, and I think 53 had a lot to do with it. At a certain point your authentic self has got to be of upmost importance.

''I feel like you have to at some point you have to introduce yourself to people and I'm introducing that Viola to people - that's what I'm going to do! It's 2019 baby! You can either wait to be invited the party or you can create your own party.''

The 'How to Get Away With Murder' star has previously revealed that she is set to play the first black Congresswoman Shirley Chisholm in a new biopic for Amazon, which is being produced for Amazon by JuVee, the production house she owns with her husband Julius Tennon.

Speaking to The Hollywood Reporter, Viola previously said: ''I hope to educate, because a lot of people don't know who she was.''

Shirley was also the first woman of any race to run for president from a major political party, in her case, as a Democrat.

The movie will tell the story of Shirley - who passed away in 2005 - as she became a civil rights pioneer throughout the 1960s and '70s.

Viola and her husband will both produce the feature for Amazon, which comes as the first of a series of politically themed films the couple makes for the streamer.

Maggie Betts is on board to direct from a screenplay by Adam Countee and produced with Homegrown Pictures' Stephanie Allain.