M-Net, the MultiChoice Group’s flagship channel on DStv Premium, has acquired the rights from The Walt Disney Company to screen Black Is King across Africa.
The film by Beyoncé is based on the music of The Lion King: The Gift from last year’s release of Disney’s The Lion King. The teaser and trailer about this new visual album are already available.
M-Net is scheduled to bring Black Is King to the continent within 24-hours of its debut on Disney+. The M-Net screening is scheduled for Saturday, August 1 at 20:00 CAT and 21:00 EAT. And, DStv customers who don’t have access to M-Net will also not miss out.
The MultiChoice Group will open M-Net to DStv Compact Plus, Compact and Family for two hours on the night that Black Is King arrives in Africa. DStv Premium customers will have it available it on DStv Catch Up for 30 days.
Christine Service, Senior Vice President of The Walt Disney Company Africa, describes Black Is King as a powerful, relevant and timely creative and celebratory expression of identity that they felt was important to be shared with fans across Africa as it launched globally on Disney+.
Starring featured artists from the film’s music soundtrack as well as guest appearances, Black Is King tells the story of a young king’s journey through betrayal, love, and self-identity. Guided by his ancestors, father and childhood love, he earns the virtues needed to reclaim his home and throne.
Thus, it reimagines the lessons of last year’s The Lion King for today’s young kings and queens in search of their own crowns. The film was in production for a year, with a cast and crew that represent diversity and connectivity.
Black Is King features a list of diverse voices on its creative team, including directors Emmanuel Adjei (the film Shahmaran), Blitz Bazawule (the film The Burial of Kojo), Pierre Debusschere (Mine and Ghost videos for Beyoncé), Jenn Nkiru (BLACK TO TECHNO film), Ibra Ake (creative director and producer on This is America video for Childish Gambino), Dikayl Rimmasch (CACHAO, UNO MAS film), Jake Nava (Crazy in Love, Single Ladies, Partition videos for Beyoncé) and co-director and long-time collaborator of Beyoncé, Kwasi Fordjour.
The list of additional co-directors and second unit directors adds to the crew’s global representation, including Dafe Oboro, Julian Klincewicz, Derek Milton, Meji Alabi, Joshua Kissi, Alexandre Moors and Deon Van Zyl.
Filmed in various locations, the film’s cinematography captures people and landscapes across continents, starting in New York, then Los Angeles, South Africa, West Africa, London and Belgium. From all those places came the cast of actors and dancers that influenced the film’s tableau and choreography.
The new trailer provides a glimpse of some of the special guests in the film. They include models Aweng Ade-Chuol and Adut Akech, supermodel Naomi Campbell, Tina Knowles-Lawson, author and Academy Award®-winning actor Lupita Nyong’o, singer Kelly Rowland, Pharrell Williams and JAY-Z, among others. Many artists featured on The Lion King: The Gift album also makes appearances.
Among other Mzansi stars featured in Black Is King are Connie Chiume (Gomora), Nandi Madida (The Road), Nyaniso Dzedze (Binnelanders) and Warren Masemola (The River).