Variety has reported that singer/songwriter/composer Jon Batiste is set to join the readaptation of Alice Walker‘s The Color Purple, set to release in theatres on December 20, 2023. Steven Spielberg previously adapted the book in 1985, which starred Danny Glover, Oprah Winfrey, Adolph Caesar, and Whoopi Goldberg.
Batiste recently won the Grammy award for Album of the Year with We Are, and won the Academy Award in 2021 for the score of Disney/Pixar’s Soul, with Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross. He will be playing Grady, husband to Taraji P. Henson‘s Shug Avery, a piano man described as “the epitome of charm and innocence”
Black is King co-director Blitz Bazawule is helming the film, with Marcus Gardley writing the screenplay. Spielberg is executive producing alongside Quincy Jones, Scott Sanders, and Oprah Winfrey. The movie also stars Fantasia Barrino, Colman Domingo, Danielle Brooks, H.E.R., Ciara, Louis Gossett Jr, David Alan Grier, Aunjanue Ellis, Tamela J. Mann, and Deon Cole.