Inspired by The Lion King, Black is King was written, directed, and executive produced by Bey. On Saturday night, the singer dropped the one-minute teaser on her website, beyonce.com. The film arrives right after the first anniversary of the newest version of The Lion King, in which Bey voiced Nala. She also curated the remake’s soundtrack, The Lion King: The Gift.
The film is based on the soundtrack mentioned above, which includes guest appearances from Bey, Childish Gambino, Kendrick Lamar, Pharrell, 070 Shake, Tierra Whack, Jay-Z, Blue Ivy Carter, and more.
“Black Is King is a celebratory memoir for the world on the Black experience,” Disney and Beyoncé’s Parkwood Entertainment said when announcing the visual album. “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.”
According to the release, the visual album reinterprets teachings from The Lion King for “today’s young kings and queens in search of their own crowns.” It took one year to produce the film, with Bey working alongside a crew that represented “diversity and connectivity.”
Black is King honors the “voyages of Black families, throughout time,” with the visual album focusing on the story of a young king and his “transcendent journey through betrayal, love, and self-identity.” The announcement continues, “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.”
Watch the trailer for Black is King above.