Beyoncé is giving fans another look into her upcoming Black Is King visual album.
The Houston icon shared a trailer on Sunday (July 19) featuring her husband JAY-Z, longtime collaborators such as Pharrell but also fellow Destiny’s Child singer Kelly Rowland, Beyoncé’s mother Tina Knowles-Lawson, fashion model Naomi Campbell, Academy Award-winner Lupita Nyong’o and many of the acts that appear on The Gift, the album she released in conjunction with the live-action version of The Lion King in 2019.
“You were formed by the heat of the galaxy. What a thing to be, both unique and familiar,” Beyoncé says in a voiceover. “To be one and the same, and still unlike any other.”
Disney said of Black Is King, “The film reimagines the lessons from the 2019 blockbuster for today’s young kings and queens in search of their own crowns.”
In June, Beyoncé opened up about the project, calling it a “labor of love” and that the events of 2020 have “made the film’s vision and message even more relevant.”
“I believe that when Black people tell our own stories, we can shift the axis of the world and tell our REAL history of generational wealth and richness of soul that are not told in our history books,” she wrote.
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I typically keep comments short and sweet, but I just watched the trailer with my family and I’m excited. 🎶please don’t get me hype🎶🤪 “Black Is King” is a labor of love. It is my passion project that I have been filming, researching and editing day and night for the past year. I’ve given it my all and now it’s yours. It was originally filmed as a companion piece to “The Lion King: The Gift” soundtrack and meant to celebrate the breadth and beauty of Black ancestry. I could never have imagined that a year later, all the hard work that went into this production would serve a greater purpose. The events of 2020 have made the film’s vision and message even more relevant, as people across the world embark on a historic journey. We are all in search of safety and light. Many of us want change. I believe that when Black people tell our own stories, we can shift the axis of the world and tell our REAL history of generational wealth and richness of soul that are not told in our history books. With this visual album, I wanted to present elements of Black history and African tradition, with a modern twist and a universal message, and what it truly means to find your self-identity and build a legacy. I spent a lot of time exploring and absorbing the lessons of past generations and the rich history of different African customs. While working on this film, there were moments where I’ve felt overwhelmed, like many others on my creative team, but it was important to create a film that instills pride and knowledge. I only hope that from watching, you leave feeling inspired to continue building a legacy that impacts the world in an immeasurable way. I pray that everyone sees the beauty and resilience of our people. This is a story of how the people left MOST BROKEN have EXTRAORDINARY gifts.❤️✊🏾 Thank you to Blitz, Emmanuel, Ibra, Jenn, Pierre, Dikayl, Kwasi and all the brilliant creatives. Thank you to all at Disney for giving this Black woman the opportunity to tell this story. This experience has been an affirmation of a grander purpose. My only goal is that you watch it with your family and that it gives you pride. Love y’all, B
Celebrating the beauty of Black ancestry, the film partners Beyoncé with filmmakers such as Pierre Debusschere, Ibra Ake, Blitz Bazawule, Emmanuel Adjei, Dikal Rimmasch, Jenn Nkiru and Kawsi Fordjour.
The film is also set to be shown on much of the African continent including South Africa, Nigeria, Ghana, Ethiopia, Nambia, Cameroon, Liberia, Burundi, Senegal, Togo, Somalia, Benin, Congo, Kenya, Ivory Coast, Zimbabwe, Malawi, Gabon, Cape Verde and more.
Black Is King isn’t the only way Beyoncé has chosen to give back recently. Her BeyGOOD Foundation recently launched the Black-Owned Small Business Impact Fund in partnership with the NAACP. The fund will provide $10,000 grants to Black-owned companies in cities across the country that have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and the fight for racial justice.
“The NAACP is proud to partner with BeyGOOD to help strengthen small businesses and to ensure economic empowerment for Black businesses,” the NAACP said in a statement.