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'The Color Purple' Trailer, Starring Fantasia Barrino, Is Finally Here

The movie musical, also featuring Taraji P. Henson and Danielle Brooks, makes its way into theaters December 25th.

She's here.  Warner Bros. Pictures has released the first trailer for its highly anticipated The Color Purple movie musical, produced by Steven Spielberg and Oprah Winfrey and starring American Idol winner Fantasia Barrino, Emmy winner Taraji P. Henson, and Danielle Brooks. At first glance, Celie, Shug Avery, and Sophia—the three central women portrayed by Barrino, Henson, and Brooks, respectively—are as vivid as ever. 

Based on Alice Walker’s Pulitzer-winning novel, The Color Purple follows the trials and tribulations of Celie, a Black woman in the early 20th century who suffers abuse at the hands of her father and husband. In 1985, The Color Purple was adapted into a feature film directed by Spielberg and starring Whoopi Goldberg as Celie and Winfrey—who earned an Oscar nomination for best supporting actress—as Sofia. In 2006, The Color Purple was adapted into a Broadway musical with a  book by Marsha Norman, music and lyrics by Brenda Russell, Stephen Bray, and the late Allee Willis. It was revived on Broadway in 2016, starring the Tony-winning Cynthia Erivo as Celie as well as Danielle Brooks, who reprises her Tony-nominated turn as Sofia in the movie musical. 

Now, Black Is King director Blitz Bazawule provides a fresh perspective on the now classic tale. “Today, our teacher told us about a place called Africa,” says Nettie, Celie's sister played by The Little Mermaid's Halle Bailey, at the top of the trailer. “She say our mama come from queens over there. That means we royalty.” Soon, young Celie (Phylicia Pearl Mpasi) is separated from Nettie and married off against her will to Mister (Colman Domingo). 

As she grows older, Celie—played in adulthood by Barrino, who also played the role on Broadway— struggles to reunite with her sister and find herself. Along the way, she meets Brooks' Sofia, a strong, independent wife, as well as Shug Avery, the fabulous night club performer played by Henson. Throughout the trailer, Barrino belts out the musical's eleven o’clock number “I'm Here.”

“Dear Celie,” says Nettie at the end of the trailer. “We are more than just kings and queens. We are at the center of the universe.” Their story will be centered once again when The Color Purple debuts in theaters December 25th, 2023. 


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