On Juneteenth, Beyoncé reminded us of one of her greatest talents: dropping a new project when no one was expecting it. On Saturday night, a little more than one week after we were blessed with her new song, “Black Parade,” Beyoncé dropped a surprise trailer for her visual album, “Black Is King.”
In a post on Saturday night, following the trailer’s premiere during the BET Awards, Beyoncé posted on Instagram to share how it felt for her to watch the trailer with her loved ones. She also included the trailer in her post.
“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.
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The trailer, which is also at the top of Beyoncé’s website, is one minute and ten seconds long. The film is based on the music of The Lion King: The Gift, which Disney released along with The Lion King film last year. The album features Childish Gambino, Kendrick Lamar, Pharrell, 070 Shake, Tierra Whack, Jay-Z, Blue Ivy Carter and Jessie Reyez, as well as African artists including Wizkid, Shatta Wale, Burna Boy, Mr Eazi, Tiwa Savage, Tekno, Yemi Alade, Busiswa and Salatiel.
“Black Is King is a celebratory memoir for the world on the Black experience,” Disney and Beyoncé’s Parkwood Entertainment said in an announcement, via Variety. “The film is a story for the ages that informs and rebuilds the present. A reunion of cultures and shared generational beliefs. A story of how the people left most broken have an extraordinary gift and a purposeful future.”
The companies said that this new album features the story of a young king’s “transcendent journey through betrayal, love and self-identity.” With the help of his ancestors and the lessons his father taught him, he accepts his true destiny.
“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.”
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