Beyoncé’s much-anticipated visual album, Black is King made its way to Disney Plus early this morning. Featuring Blue Ivy, Jay-Z, Childish Gambino, Tierra Whack, Lupita Nyong’o, Naomi Campbell, Kelly Rowland, Pharell Williams, Jessie Reyez, several breakout African artists like Mr Eazi and Yemi Alade, and more with scenes from every corner of the world.

“This visual album from Beyoncé reimagines the lessons of The Lion King for today’s young kings and queens in search of their crowns,” the album’s Disney Plus description reads. “Let Black be synonymous with glory,” Beyoncé says in narration before the first song of the visual album, “Bigger,” begins.

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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. Love y’all, B

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Black is King tells the story of “a young king’s transcendent journey through betrayal, love and self-identity.” In narration, we see the young king guided by his ancestors and his father Mufasa to acknowledge his personal power and “reclaim his home and throne.” Inspired by her work on the live action Lion King film in which she voiced Simba’s childhood best friend and eventual love Nala and based on The Lion King: The Gift, the film’s soundtrack curate by Queen Bey. Despite being inspired by the Shakespearean tale of Simba the lion and the animals in his kingdom, Black is King is undeniably tied to the human world, a celebration of Black experience and cultures around the world.

The eighty-five-minute film includes narration, dance, and music to tell the young king’s story over the course of fifteen songs (seventeen if you include the MeLo-X remix of “Find Your Way Back” and the extended version of “Black Parade”).

As if dropping a stunning visual album wasn’t a major event on its own, Beyoncé also shared the music video for the song “Already” hours before the film debuted on Disney Plus.

“No true king ever dies,” Beyoncé says in the narration of Black is King, yet it’s queen Beyoncé who continues to prove her incredible strength as an artist, storyteller, and cultural influence with this momentous visual album.

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Veronica Good has been with Showstopper Magazine since 2016. When she isn't keeping you updated on the latest trends, she is at home with her many pets or probably playing The Sims 4. Veronica has a BA in English and an MA in writing from Coastal Carolina University. She is also a writer of fiction and poetry, and her work can be found in Archarios, Tempo, and Scapegoat.