The 38-year-old singer dropped the visual album on Disney+ Friday, July 31.
It’s safe to say Blue Ivy Carter, 8, and Rumi Carter and Sir Carter, 3, are the showstoppers, especially considering the twins’ cameo marks a rare appearance. They’re not the only members of the famous family included in the video, either. Tina Knowles-Lawson and Jay-Z are in it, too. In fact, there are several celebrity cameos. Lupita Nyong’o, Kelly Rowland and Naomi Campbell are featured in the film, as well.
According to Disney+, Black Is King “reimagines the lessons of The Lion King for today’s young kings and queens in search of their own crowns.”
“The film was in production for one year with a cast and crew that represent diversity and connectivity,” the streaming platform states on its website. “The voyages of Black families, throughout time, are honored in a tale about a young king’s transcendent journey through betrayal, love and self-identity. His ancestors help guide him toward his destiny, and with his father’s teachings and guidance from his childhood love, he earns the virtues needed to reclaim his home and throne. These timeless lessons are revealed and reflected through Black voices of today, now sitting in their own power.”
In an Instagram post last month, Beyoncé referred to Black Is King as a “labor of love” and her “passion project.” She also shared that it “was originally filmed as a companion piece to The Lion King: The Gift soundtrack,” which she debuted along with the 2019 remake, 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,” Beyoncé, who played Nala in the Disney film, continued in her post. “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.”