ESSENCE’S 2023 HOLIDAY ISSUE 'The Color Purple'

Source: Mickalene Thomas / Mickalene Thomas

The gorgeous cast of The Color Purple adaptation graces the cover of Essence Magazine’s November/December holiday issue. The star-studded lineup includes Black Hollywood heavy-hitters Danielle Brooks, H.E.R., Fantasia Barino, and Taraji P. Henson.

The Color Purple was first published as a novel in 1983. In 1995, it was turned into a movie depicting the story of African American women’s struggles during the early 1900s. The empowering tale has also been told through a Broadway musical and is now being remade into a feature that fuses the book, the original movie, and the Broadway play. The film features a stellar cast that includes the ladies on the cover of Essence and more notable celebrities such as Halle Bailey as young Nettie, Ciara as adult Nettie, Phylicia Pearl Mpasi as young Celie, and Colman Domingo as Mister.

The Color Purple Cast

Inside the issue, each lady opens up about their experience with such a dynamic film. Winfrey (one of the producers for the revamped version) stated that she is looking forward to women experiencing this film. “One of the things I’m most excited about is what The Color Purple will do for the -sisterhood,” said Winfrey. The media mogul went on to reveal that her role in the 1985 film made a significant impact on her life. “And God taught me to surrender—that was the big lesson for me. They were only offering $35,000 to be in this film, and it is the best $35,000 I ever earned,” she concluded.

Actress and singer Fantasia Barrino disclosed that, at first, she was hesitant to take the role due to the rawness of her character, Celie. She also paid homage to Whoopi Goldberg (who played Celie in the 1985 film), opening this door for her. “In the beginning, I wasn’t going to take the role—because I knew I was going to have to step into some things that I’d buried. I would say thank you, Ms. Whoopi Goldberg, for not being afraid to play Celie. For being honest. Thank you for paving the way for girls like myself,” Barrino expressed.

Read the entire story here.


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