‘Black Is King’ Trailer: Beyonce Shows The Power Of Blending Music And Visual Storytelling Together
Disney+ has released its newest trailer for Beyonce’s Black is King. The film is a visual album inspired by The Lion King: The Gift, the official soundtrack for last year’s photorealistic animation reimagining. Just as the description suggests, a visual record is a combination of music and pictorial images to create a heightened sense of artistry. But unlike Beyonce or Lemonade, Black is King takes The Lion King story and gives it a humanistic twist.
According to the press release, “the film reimagines the lessons from the 2019 blockbuster for today’s young kings and queens in search of their own crowns.” It will be an authentically Black story, as told by a creative team comprised of directors from around the world. These directors include Emmanuel Adjei (the film “Shahmaran”), Blitz Bazawule (the film “The Burial of Kojo”), Pierre Debusschere (“Mine” and “Ghost” videos for Beyoncé), Jenn Nkiru (“BLACK TO TECHNO” film), Ibra Ake (creative director and producer on “This Is America” video for Childish Gambino), Dikayl Rimmasch (“CACHAO, UNO MAS” film), Jake Nava (“Crazy in Love,” “Single Ladies,” “Partition” videos for Beyoncé) and co-director and long-time collaborator of Beyoncé, Kwasi Fordjour.
The list of additional co-directors and second unit directors adds to the crew’s global representation, including Dafe Oboro, Julian Klincewicz, Derek Milton, Meji Alabi, Joshua Kissi, Alexandre Moors, and Deon Van Zyl.
And the filming locations are just as diverse as the team of directors. The film’s cinematography captures beautiful people and landscapes across continents, starting in New York, then Los Angeles, South Africa, West Africa, London, and Belgium. From all those places came an extraordinary cast of actors and dancers that influenced the film’s rich tableau and vibrant choreography.
Additionally, the story will have characters played by some of the most recognizable people like Aweng Ade-Chuol and Adut Akech, supermodel Naomi Campbell, Tina Knowles-Lawson, author and Academy Award®-winning actor Lupita Nyong’ o, singer Kelly Rowland, Pharrell Williams, and JAY-Z, among others. Many artists featured on “The Lion King: The Gift” album also make appearances.
Because this is a Black story, a distribution deal was announced to make “Black Is King” available on much of the African Continent, including South Africa, Nigeria, Ghana, Ethiopia, Namibia, Cameroon, Liberia, Burundi, Senegal, Togo, Somalia, Benin, Congo, Kenya, Ivory Coast, Zimbabwe, Malawi, Gabon, Cape Verde, and many more countries through MultiChoice Group’s M-Net and Canal+ Afrique.
Here’s the official plot synopsis for Black Is King
“This visual album from Beyoncé reimagines the lessons of “The Lion King” for today’s young kings and queens in search of their own crowns. The film was in production for one year with a cast and crew that represent diversity and connectivity.
The voyages of Black families, throughout time, are honored 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.”
Black Is King will stream on Disney+ on July 31, 2020, just two weeks after the release of last year’s The Lion King.