If you’re someone who gushed over Beyoncé‘s epic visual album Black Is King, you’ll be happy to know that the director is now lending his talents to an upcoming The Color Purple musical movie.
According to Deadline, Ghana-born filmmaker Blitz Bazawule will direct the Warner Bros. movie based on the Tony-winning Broadway musical. Some heavy-hitters are already backing the project, including Oprah Winfrey, Steven Spielberg and Quincy Jones who will all serve as producers. According to Deadline, they all watched Bazawule’s movie on Netflilx called The Burial Of Kojo and were impressed by his visual style. Bazawule co-directed Black Is King with Beyoncé and Emmanuel Adjei.
“We, were all blown away by Blitz’s unique vision as a director and look forward to seeing how he brings the next evolution of this beloved story to life,” Winfrey told Deadline.
Marcus Gardley is penning the screenplay based on The Color Purple Broadway reimagining of Alice Walker’s 1982 novel. The story depicts African American families and relationships in early twentieth-century Georgia. The musical, includes jazz, ragtime, gospel, blues and African rhythms. The book was written by Marsha Norman with music by Brenda Russell, Allee Willis and Stephen Bray.
Alogn with filmmaking, Bazawule is also a composer and musician of four studio albums, including Stereotype (2009), Native Sun (2011), Afropolitan Dreams (2014) and Diasporadical (2016). His musicality impressed the producers of The Color Purple as well, considering he will be taking on a musical genre.
The original Broadway musical of The Color Purple debuted in 2005, earning 11 Tony Award nominations in 2006 and winning for LaChanze’s role as Celie. A revival in 2015 earned four Tony nominations and won for Best Revival of a Musical and for Cynthia Erivo as Celie in her Broadway debut.
Spielberg directed and produced the 11-time Oscar-nominated 1985 film. Quincy Jones also served as a producer. The feature starred Whoopi Goldberg and Oprah Winfrey in her feature debut, earning Oprah a Best Supporting Actress Oscar nomination.