‘The Color Purple’ Broadway Star LaChanze Calls Out The New Musical Film For Failing To Recognize Her As One Of The Original ‘Celie’ Actresses: ‘I Do Want My Royalty Fee For The Lyrics I Added To ‘I’m Here”
There’s a lot to be said about the latest adaptation of ‘The Color Purple,‘ and it’s not all good.
Actress/producer LaChanze has spoken out against the production for its failure to acknowledge her work in the legendary book-to-film’s original Broadway version.
Based on Alice Walker’s novel, ‘The Color Purple,‘ and the 1985 flick of the same name, the stage musical initially went to Broadway in 2005. LaChanze (who portrayed the main character ‘Celie’) won a Tony for her outstanding performance in 2006.
LaChanze wins Best Actress in a Musical for playing Celie in the original Broadway production of The Color Purple at the 2006 Tony Awards. pic.twitter.com/Z0lxnK70L3
— Kevin Daly (@kevinddaly) December 26, 2023
On December 25, 2023, a movie rendition of the play hit U.S. theaters. The anticipated project starred Taraji P. Henson, Danielle Brooks, Colman Domingo, Corey Hawkins, H.E.R., Halle Bailey, Louis Gossett Jr., Phylicia Pearl Mpasi, Ciara, Jon Batiste, Aunjanue Ellis-Taylor, and Fantasia Barrino.
Following its debut, LaChanze took to X (formerly known as Twitter) to address the recent chatter about her absence from the motion picture’s promotional run.
The 62-year-old wrote,
“I am getting a lot of DM’s and posts about why I’ve been left out of the press as the original Celie in the @TheColorPurple (musical).”
She continued by mentioning her contribution to the musical’s famous track, “I’m Here.” LaChanze said:
“I am thrilled for the movie’s success! Happy for all involved. However, I do want my royalty fee for the lyrics I added to “I’M HERE”.”
Fellow users then chimed in, further rooting for the Florida native’s recognition in ‘The Color Purple.’ An individual shared,
“I’ve been looking for LaChanze. Y’all adapted the Broadway musical… not the movie… and I haven’t seen her anywhere, at all. Please make it right.”
The Broadway phenomenon replied:
“I poured my heart and soul into that role. And was a huge part and writing “I’m Here”.”
Additionally, LaChanze reposted a word about the movie producer’s lack of appreciation for her stellar performance.
The Instagram Story (from fellow actress L Morgan Lee) read:
“[LaChanze’s] artistry in the room developing Celie in the Broadway adaptation of The Color Purple can not be taken for granted… So often we just acknowledge the writers and creative team and say that the work is larger than us all…YES AND…there would BE no work the way we know it if not for the energy, talent and commitment of the actors in the room giving the words and notes on a page BREATH.”
As of now, no further statements have been given.
We’re hoping that all works out for the beautifully talented LaChanze and her fight to receive what she rightfully has earned.
Set in the 1900s, ‘The Color Purple’ follows the story of a young, Black girl in rural Georgia and the trauma that she endures in her poor environment.
What are your thoughts? Let us know in the comments below!