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Grammy winner and Soul composer Jon Batiste to appear in The Color Purple movie

This film is really bringing in the stars!

Jon Batiste
© Montclair Film, CC BY 2.0 <https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0>, via Wikimedia Commons

Another Grammy winner – Jon Batiste – has joined the upcoming film version of The Color Purple musical.

Quite frankly we've almost lost track of the sheer volume of stars now attached to the project, including Oscar-winner H.E.R, Fantasia, Danielle Brooks, Taraji P Henson, Colman Domingo and Corey Hawkins. Halle Bailey (The Little Mermaid) will also appear, as will Grammy winner Ciara.

Batiste, who received an Academy Award, a Golden Globe Award, a Grammy Award and a BAFTA Film Award for his work on Soul and recently picked up five Grammys including Album of the Year for We Are, will play Grady, Shug Avery's husband. He regularly supports Stephen Colbert on his fan-favourite late-night talk show on CBS.

The musical version of Alice Walker's seminal text premiered on Broadway in 2005 and features a book by Marsha Norman and music and lyrics by Brenda Russell, Allee Willis, and Stephen Bray. It is set to embark on its first tour of English and Welsh venues from September.

Marcus Gardley has penned the screenplay and Blitz Bazawule will direct, with the film set for release on 20 December 2023. Based on the novel by Alice Walker, The Color Purple tells the story of Celie, a young Black woman living in rural Georgia who becomes estranged from her beloved sister, is forcibly wed to an older widower, and becomes smitten with Shug Avery — all in the first act.

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