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AOL Black Voices reports that American Idol winner Fantasia Barrino will play the role of gospel legend Mahalia Jackson in a movie about her life:

The feature film will be based on the 1993 book Got to Tell It: Mahalia Jackson, 'Queen of Gospel,' which recounts the life of the late American gospel singer, a civil rights activist who was also inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

According to the Hollywood Reporter, the project will be directed by Euzhan Palcy (A Dry White Season) from a script by Jim Evering.

She will portray Jackson on her journey from abject poverty in New Orleans to her rise as a global figure in gospel and early supporter of Martin Luther King Jr. The singer died in 1972 at the age of 60.

There's nothing wrong with Fantasia for Real (OK, there are a few things wrong, starting with her brother, Tiny, but that's another post entirely). Still, the leap from starring in a guilty-pleasure reality show to playing a legend in a serious biopic is definitely a positive development in this talented singer's career, more along the lines of her role in The Color Purple. After the rough year she's had, things seem to be looking up.


Read more at AOL Black Voices.

In other news: Virginia's First Black Chief Justice Hassell Dies at 55.