The Biopic of Queen of Gospel, Mahalia Jackson, Set To Be Premiered

The biopic that chronicles 40 years in the life of prolific gospel singer, Mahalia Jackson, is set to be produced by the anchor of ‘’Good Morning America’’, Robin Roberts. The biopic which has been titled ‘’Robin Roberts Presents: Mahalia Jackson’’ is the first work on partnership between Roberts and Lifetime. It is a work of fiction about the singer who has been said to be the Queen of Gospel. The partnership was sealed in 2018.

Acting as Jackson is Danielle Brooks, a Grammy Award winning actress, and a star in Orange is the New Black. The much anticipated movie is directed by Kenny Leon who is a recipient of the Tony Awards.

It will be recalled that Brooks and Leon had formerly worked together on ‘’Much Ado About Nothing’’, an all-Black contemporary production for the Shakespeare in the Park series at the Public Theater in New York City. Coming together again for this biopic has been dubbed as an artistic reunion as the two professionals seem to be cool with working together.

Jackson was born in New Orleans. Her love for singing started at an early age. She followed her passion to become one of the greatest gospel musicians of all time. In the United States, she is highly revered. In 1961, she became the first gospel artist to win a Grammy Award. Also, she was notable as a civil rights activist.

Her song, “Move on Up a Little Higher” made millions of sales which gave her much international fame. Consequently, it gave her the avenue to perform at various settings. Among the places she had to perform were John F. Kennedy’s inaugural ball and before the prominent Carnegie Hall.

Her love for civil rights movement was evident as she performed at different rallies. One of such occasions was with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. in 1963 at the March on Washington. The relationship between King and Jackson was said to be cordial and that performance was expected to support racial equality. She also lightened up King’s “I Have a Dream” speech at the historic march.

This biopic is executive produced by Roberts and Linda Berman. Meanwhile, the co-executive producers are Brooks and Leon. Bettina Gilois wrote the script while the dramaturge and stage director is Todd Kreidler.

“Robin Roberts Presents: Mahalia Jackson” is set to be premiered on Saturday, April 3 at 8pm ET/PT. This will also mark the 53rd year of the assassination of Dr. King on April 4, 1968. On January 27, 1972, Jackson died of diabetes complications and heart failure at age 60.

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