‘The Color Purple’ Remake: The Cast, Release Date and More Updates – Hollywood Life

‘The Color Purple’ Movie: New Trailer, Release Date & All the Latest Updates About the Remake

Taraji P. Henson shows off her incredible vocals in the brand-new trailer for 'The Color Purple' remake. Watch the powerful footage of the upcoming musical and get all the latest updates.

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  • The Color Purple is a 1982 novel that has been adapted into a movie and a musical.
  • The remake will hit theaters on Christmas Day 2023.
  • A second trailer dropped on October 10.

The Color Purple will be back to captivate audiences when the film adaptation of the musical arrives in theaters this winter. Alice Walker’s 1982 novel was first made into the 1985 tearjerker film, directed by Steven Spielberg. Years later, it was transformed into a Broadway version in 2005 with a reboot in 2015. After 11 Oscar nominations and a slew of Tony nods, the heart-wrenching story of a group of Black women in the South during the early 1900s is returning to the screen with American Idol winner Fantasia Barrino leading the cast.

In addition to Fantasia, The Color Purple features more all-star actors you know and love like Taraji P. Henson. A new trailer was released on October 10 and confirmed what we already know: The Color Purple is sure to be the movie event of the holiday season. From the cast to the release, here’s everything you need to know about the upcoming film.

When Is The Color Purple Remake Coming Out?

Fans will get a holiday treat this year! The Color Purple will debut in theaters on December 25, 2023. The movie will be released exclusively in theaters. Other hit musicals have been released on Christmas Day in the past, including Dreamgirls, Into The Woods, and Les Misérables.

The 1985 film version debuted around the holidays as well. Sadly, the Spielberg-directed classic would go on to hold the record for the film receiving the most Oscar nominations without a win alongside 1977’s The Turning Point. We expect a much brighter future in store for the musical version come the 2024 Academy Awards!

Who Will Be In The Color Purple Remake?

Fantasia played Celie Harris during The Color Purple’s original Broadway run from 2007 to 2008, and she was initially hesitant to take up the role again after she had a challenging time with it. “My life at that time was all over the place,” Fantasia recalled to Entertainment Tonight. “So, carrying Celie’s weight and my weight was not fun. And I remember saying in interviews and radio stations, when they would ask me, I said, ‘Well, I did it, but I’ll never do it again.”

Luckily, a producer convinced Fantasia that she was the only one who could do the role proud. “It’s going to be absolutely amazing,” she added. “I’m glad that I didn’t allow that door to close. I talked it over with my whole entire family and everybody kept saying, ‘I think you should do it.'”

Phylicia Pearl Mpasi plays the young version of Celie in the film. This will mark her onscreen debut.

Ciara will be playing the adult version of Nettie Harris, Celie’s sister. It is art in motion. Fantasia is Celie, and I play Nettie, and the younger Nettie is Halle Bailey, and so, I mean, the cast is incredible,” the singer said on The Jennifer Hudson Show in December 2023.

Following her amazing performance as Ariel in the live-action version of The Little Mermaid, Halle will be on the big screen again as the younger Nettie. “Getting to be a part of The Color Purple is such an amazing moment for me, I feel, because it’s such a staple, that film, in our community in particular,” she told Entertainment Tonight. “So, I remember my grandparents would always have it playing in the background. And I was just really excited, not only because I’m such a fan of the women that are in it… It felt like a fun family, like you’re at a family reunion. You love seeing all your aunties and cousins, it literally felt just like that.”

She continued, “I was excited to play young Nettie because I felt I had experience of sisterhood, that bond that I have with my sister Chloe [Bailey]. I felt like I was able to pull from my experiences with her and apply it to the beautiful relationship between Celie and Nettie. Even though Nettie goes away for almost half the film, she’s gone, but you feel her love and that thought of her and Celie.”

Halle Bailey
Halle Bailey and Phylicia Pearl Mpasi in ‘The Color Purple.’ (Warner Bros.)

The cast also includes Taraji P. Henson as Shug Avery, Danielle Brooks as Sofia, Colman Domingo as Albert “Mister” Johnson, Corey Hawkins as Harpo Johnson, H.E.R. as Mary “Squeak” Agnes, Aunjanue Ellis as Mama, Louis Gossett Jr. as Ol’ Mister Johnson, David Alan Grier as Rev. Samuel Avery, Tamela J. Mann as First Lady, Deon Cole as Alfonso, and more.

Danielle is reprising her role as Sofia in the movie adaptation of the musical. She originally played the role in the 2015 Broadway revival alongside Jennifer Hudson and Cynthia Erivo.

The original 1985 film starred Whoopi Goldberg as Celie and Oprah as Sofia. As of right now, it hasn’t been announced whether or not Whoopi or Oprah will make an appearance in the remake. However, Oprah serves as a producer of the musical remake.

Black Is King co-director Blitz Bazawule serves as the director of the film, with a screenplay by playwright Marcus Gardley. In addition to Oprah and Spielberg, Scott Sanders and Quincy Jones are producers. Quincy made his debut as a film producer with the 1985 original film.

The Color Purple Trailer

The second official trailer dropped on October 10, and Shug Avery takes center stage. Dressed in a fabulous red ensemble, Taraji sings as Shug Avery in the nearly 3-minute trailer.

The first trailer debuted at CinemaCon in April 2023 before it was released wide on May 22. The footage revealed the beloved bond between sisters Celie and Nettie. They’re separated at a young age, and Celie has always yearned to reunite with her sister. As she grows older, Celie becomes friends with Shug Avery.

The first official trailer also revealed a snippet of Fantasia’s incredible voice as she belts out “I’m Here.” Get ready for the Oscars, Fantasia!


Hey TikTok! I come bearing gifts. TheColorPurple, a bold new take on the beloved classic, will be in theaters Christmas Day #newtrailer #fyp

♬ original sound – Oprah

Before the trailer was released to the world, Oprah sat some of the cast down to watch it for the first time. Taraji P. Henson, Danielle Brooks, H.E.R., Fantasia, and Oprah were wearing bathrobes ahead of their Essence cover shoot as they watched the trailer. They cheered each other on as the trailer aired on the computer in front of them.

The Color Purple Filming

Filming began in March 2022 and took place primarily in Georgia. Production wrapped in July 2022. Halle Bailey marked her last day on set with a poignant Instagram message along with photos from the set.

“I’m so very grateful to have had this experience, my second major motion picture complete in the last year and a half. God is so good. Here’s a few of my fav moments without showing too much,” she wrote.

Fantasia as Celie Harris. (Warner Bros.)

During one of her final days on set, Fantasia witnessed a beautiful rainbow. “Rainbow is hovering over us today onset,” she began. “The last color happens to be ‘Purple.’ I can’t wait to sit down and tell you guys the stories from this Amazing Story and Woman I’ve played for 6 Months and grown to know so very well. @kingofbingo you covered me even in the hard times( Mister).”

She continued, “5 more days and Mrs. Celie and I will part ways but I’ll take so many memories and lessons with me. Thank You Lady for what you have shown me and what you’ll show so many Black Girls who needs to hear and see your story.”

Blitz Bazawule announced that filming had officially wrapped on July 16. “This has been a life changing experience for me. I am deeply indebted to our Producers for choosing me to reimagine Alice Walker’s classic,” he wrote on Instagram.

What Will The Color Purple Remake Be About?

Alice Walker’s Pulitzer Prize-winning 1982 novel tells the powerful story of Celie, a Black teen in rural Georgia in the 1900s. Brenda Russell was inspired by Alice’s novel to create a stage musical of the same name. Both the film and the musical have inspired the musical remake.

During the film’s presentation at CinemaCon, Oprah said The Color Purple remake is a “celebration of sisterhood” that has both “magical realism” and “wholesome, wonderful family goodness,” according to IndieWire. “They are survivors because of their inner strength, and that is how Celie especially finds her voice,” Oprah also said. “And in this film, boy, does she have a voice.”