Oprah Winfrey, Steven Spielberg, music legend Quincy Jones and producer Scott Sanders are teaming to develop a film adaptation of the Tony Award-winning Broadway musical version of “The Color Purple” at Warner Bros. Pictures.
Alice Walker penned the Pulitzer Prize-winning original 1982 novel, a decades-spanning tale of a black woman named Celie who grows up in intense poverty in the American South and endures harsh treatment from her stepfather, husband and others in her life – testing her faith in God and humankind.
Spielberg directed the multiple Oscar-nominated film in 1985 which starred Whoopi Goldberg, Danny Glover and Winfrey making her acting debut. Then, in 2005 came a musical stage adaptation of the novel which premiered on Broadway and starred “Widows” and “Bad Times at the El Royale” breakout Cynthia Erivo.
Now that stage version, which has grossed more than $350 million in its run, is what’s being adapted this time, with Spielberg, Winfrey, Jones all producing along with Sanders who produced the Broadway version. Spielberg will NOT be directing.
The project is in the early stages of development and will next look to set a writer, with casting a long way off. It’s also unclear if Erivo might return.