Posted 6 days ago
Beyoncé has shared a powerful trailer for her upcoming visual album Black Is King with Disney Plus, set for global release on July 31.
The musician, 38, who is said to have signed a $100 million (£80 million) to work on three new projects with the network, makes a grand appearance alongside her husband Jay Z, her former Destiny's Child bandmate Kelly Rowland and her kids Blue, eight, and twins Rumi and Sir, three, in the film which champions 'black excellence' and serves as a 'celebratory memoir for the world on the black experience'.
Black Is King is based on the soundtrack she produced for the 2019 animated remake of The Lion King and follows the story of a young king's 'transcendent journey through betrayal, love and self-identity' in light of the Black Lives Matter movement, which was galvanized following the death of George Floyd.
The mother-of-three kicks off the trailer by stating 'the journey is a gift' while sitting confidently on a horse in shades of brown and white.
Hand-in-hand, Beyoncé and music mogul Jay Z, 50, real name Shawn Carter, later approach a Renaissance-inspired portrait, which displays twins Sir and Rumi as cherubs.
Another scene shows the media personality gazing lovingly at a baby, who many online have speculated could be a younger Sir.
While her Lion King: The Gift track Already plays in the background, the Halo hitmaker says: 'The answers have never left you… you can't wear a crown with your head down', before rapper Jay adds: 'Nothing is complete on its own.'
The Houston native commands attention in a series of elaborate ensembles as she shows off her incredible dance moves and reads a book titled Black Gods and Kings.
Beyonce's cousin and longtime friend Kelly, 39, takes centre stage in satin lingerie for another artistic scene, while the leading lady and her daughter Blue pose in dramatic Marie Antoinette-inspired clothing.
The one-minute teaser closes with a young boy hurtling towards a planet in the story 'of how the people left most broken have an extraordinary gift and a purposeful future.'
Marking 12 months after the release of The Lion King adaptation, in which Beyoncé voiced Nala and hailed the project 'a love letter to Africa', the movie was in production for one year with a team which represents 'diversity and connectivity', and has reworked messages from the famous film, which follows an exiled Simba's journey to his rightful throne following the death of his father Mufasa.
The album features Pharrell, Childish Gambino, Kendrick Lamar, 070 Shake, Tierra Whack, Jay-Z, Jessie Reyez, and her daughter Blue, as well as the African artists she collaborated with last year on The Lion King: The Gift, including Shatta Wale, Burna Boy, Mr Eazi, Wizkid, Tiwa Savage, Tekno, Yemi Alade, Busiswa and Salatiel.
On the film, Disney Plus and Beyoncé's Parkwood Entertainment said in a statement: 'Black Is King is a celebratory memoir for the world on the Black experience. The film is a story for the ages that informs and rebuilds the present. A reunion of cultures and shared generational beliefs.
'Beyonce reimagines the lessons of The Lion King for today's young kings and queens in search of their own crowns.
'The voyages of Black families, throughout time, are honoured in a tale about a young king's transcendent journey through betrayal, love and self-identity. His ancestors help guide him toward his destiny, and with his father's teachings and guidance from his childhood love, he earns the virtues needed to reclaim his home and throne. '
'These timeless lessons are revealed and reflected through Black voices of today, now sitting in their own power. Black Is King is an affirmation of a grand purpose, with lush visuals that celebrate Black resilience and culture. The film highlights the beauty of tradition and Black excellence.'
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