The movie is inspired by the Broadway adaptation of novelist Alice Walker’s Pulitzer Prize-winning project. The book, which was released in 1982, delves into the story of Celie Harris as she traverses through life in the South during the early twentieth century.
The Grammy award-winning music artist will portray the character Nettie. She took to Twitter to express her excitement about playing the role. “Honored to be a part of this beautiful ensemble and historic film, The Color Purple,” she shared. “Truly grateful.” The star-studded lineup of performers who will bring the story to life includes Fantasia Taylor, Danielle Brooks, Taraji P. Henson, David Alan Grier, Colman Domingo, Halle Bailey, H.E.R. and Corey Hawkins.
The project will be produced by Oprah Winfrey—who played Sofia in the 1985 film—and Steven Spielberg, who directed that version. Quincy Jones, who arranged the soundtrack for the original movie, and Scott Sanders, who produced The Color Purple Broadway musical, will also serve as producers for the project.
The reimagined musical movie is slated to be released in December 2023. In an interview with Vanity Fair, Winfrey discussed her deep reverence for the poignant story.
“It has been a vehicle for magic and purpose in my life,” she shared. “I don’t know anybody who’s ever been associated with it whose life didn’t get enhanced. Everything comes from the original words of Alice Walker, which were grounded in love, really. Love of this community. Love of these people. Love of those characters. And that just gets passed on and passed on and passed on. I can’t wait to see this next evolvement, which is not attached to having done it the way we’ve always done it.”