It looks like the already stacked cast for the upcoming movie musical adaptation of The Color Purple has just added another talented star to its roster: Jon Batiste.
Over the weekend, it was revealed that the Grammy-winning artist would be making his feature acting debut with this project. Per The Hollywood Reporter, he’ll be taking on the role of Grady, the sweet-talking, piano-playing husband to Shug Avery (played by Taraji P. Henson.) Batiste will be joined by additional power-house artists such as Danielle Brooks, Fantasia Taylor, Halle Bailey, Colman Domingo, H.E.R., Corey Hawkins, Louis Gossett Jr. and David Alan Grier.
“The word is out! This’ll be a lot of fun,” Batiste captioned in an Instagram post sharing the news.
This news comes as Batiste appears to be in the middle of his winning season. Earlier this month, he took home five prizes at this year’s Grammys including the coveted Album of the Year for his 2021 project, We Are. He was nominated for a total of 11 across multiple genres. Prior to that, in 2020, he took home an Academy and Golden Globe Award for Best Original Score for his musical contributions on the Pixar-animated film Soul. In addition to all of that, Batiste also serves as the bandleader and musical director of The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, per People.
The Color Purple movie musical began preproduction in Georgia back in March. It’s set to be produced by Oprah Winfrey, Quincy Jones, and Steven Spielberg with Black Is King filmmaker Blitz Bazawule expected to direct. Alice Walker will serve as executive producer as well. It will hit theaters on Dec. 20, 2023.