Warner Bros. has dropped the first official trailer for Blitz Bazawule‘s (The Burial of Kojo, and Beyonce’s Black Is King) The Color Purple, based on the Tony-winning musical from Norman, Brenda Lee, Allee Willis and Stephen Bray, which was based on Alice Walker’s Pulitzer Prize-winning epistolary novel of the same name.
Directed by Bazawule, from a screenplay written by Marcus Gardley, Alice Walker, and Marsha Norman, and starring Taraji P. Henson (“What Men Want,” “Hidden Figures”), Danielle Brooks (“Peacemaker,” “Orange Is the New Black”), Colman Domingo (“Ma Rainey’s Black Bottom,” “Fear the Walking Dead”), Corey Hawkins (“In the Heights,” “BlacKkKlansman”), H.E.R. (“Judas and the Black Messiah,” “Beauty and the Beast: A 30th Celebration”), Halle Bailey (“The Little Mermaid,” “Grown-ish”), Aunjanue Ellis-Taylor (“King Richard,” “If Beale Street Could Talk”), and Fantasia Barrino (in her major motion picture debut), this bold new take on the beloved classic tells the story of Celie, a Black Southern woman who struggles to find her identity after being the victim of abuse from her father and others for over forty years.
Walker’s novel was previously adapted for film under Spielberg’s direction and production in 1985, which earned all of 11 Academy Award nominations. Subsequently, a Broadway production, with lyrics and music by Stephen Bray, Brenda Russell and Allee Willis, ran from 2005 to 2008, earning 11 Tony Award nominations in 2006, including a win for LaChanze for Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role for her portrayal of Celie. The 2015 revival of the show took home two Tony awards including Best Revival of a Musical for Cynthia Erivo in her Broadway debut.
Steven Spielberg, Oprah Winfrey and Quincy Jones all serve as producers on the film which is executive produced by Alice Walker and Rebecca Walker.