“I identify myself as a child of God and I can’t get up here without thanking God. A few years ago, I saw myself in a deep state of depression and I literally wanted to quit acting,” she said. She then credited God for helping her through this period, as well as an e-mail from Bafta asking her to take part in its Breakthrough Brits programme.
“So this wasn’t an overnight thing. This wasn’t a click of the finger success. I'm still a work in progress," she added. “I want to thank everybody that said yes to me.”
She added that she wanted to encourage anybody who is suffering from depression or ”that’s having a hard time”, saying: “God made you and that's important... God loves you, just let your light shine.”
Also nominated were Sorry to Bother You’s Lakeith Stanfield, Widows actor Cynthia Erivo, American Animals’s Barry Keoghan and Jessie Buckley, who appeared in the TV series The Woman in White and the 2018 film Beast.
The Rising Star Award – which began in 2004 – has predicted many stars of the future, with former winners including Tom Hardy, Daniel Kaluuya and Eva Green.
This years nominees were selected by Bodyguard‘s Richard Madden, actor Rosamund Pike, broadcaster Edith Bowman and Marcella star Ray Panthaki.