Features Forest Whitaker, Angela Bassett, Jennifer Hudson
Tyrese Gibson and Star-Studded Cast
TBR –The feel good movie of the season is getting set to hit theaters in just a few weeks.
Featuring Forest Whitaker, playing a no-nonsense reverend, who is joined by Angela Bassett, Jennifer Hudson, Tyrese Gibson, Mary J. Blige and newcomer Jacob Latimore who’s character sits at the center of the film, all do an amazing job in bringing this modern adaptation of Harlem Renaissance poet Langston Hughes’ classic Off-Broadway production to the big silver screen.
Presented by Fox Searchlight Pictures, the holiday musical drama, Black Nativity, follows a Baltimore teen named Langston (Jacob Latimore) sent by his single mother, Naima (Jennifer Hudson) to New York City to spend the Christmas holiday with his estranged Grandparents, played by (Whitaker) the Reverend Cornell and (Bassett) who plays the role of his First Lady Aretha Cobbs .
Finding the Reverend’s and First Lady’s lifestyle a bit bittersweet, Langston makes up his mind to try to fine a way to be with his mother again and help out with her financially strapped situation. In his efforts, Langston embarks on a few unforgettable experiences along the way and learns the true meaning of family through his journey.
Forest Whitaker said, “This is an important movie because it talks about the coming together of the family and love and forgiveness.” Whitaker also said, he “studied the scripture” to make sure he knew the story well and if he needed to improvise on stage he could.
Kasi Lemmons, who directed “Black Nativity” and wrote the screenplay, said it took five years to pull it all together before she was given the green light. However she also said “I got my dream cast of just about everyone I wanted. Forest was the trickiest in some ways because at the time when I wanted to shoot, he was in South Africa. So we waited for Forest.”
One of the producers behind this production is Bishop TD Jakes who says, “I’m excited about it because first of all it’s musical content is quite different from anything I’ve ever worked with. You have Tyrese, Mary J Blige and Jennifer Hudson and to see that type of music mixed with Angela Bassett and Forest Whitaker is phenomenal. And Forest…he gives such integrity to his character, and does one of the best jobs as an actor I have ever seen of a clergymen.”
One of the surprises in the movie is to hear a couple of the seasoned actors sing and play the piano.
Langston Hughes’s play, originally titled “Wasn’t It a Mighty Day?,” debuted Off-Broadway in Dec. 1961. Still performed on stage today, “Black Nativity” retells the story of the birth of Jesus Christ from the Book of Luke with an all-black cast performing in song and dance.
“Black Nativity” is slated to hit movie theaters nationwide starting Nov. 27.