“Black AF” creator Kenya Barris and pop star and “Happy” singer Pharrell Williams are in talks to develop a feature film musical based on the holiday Juneteenth at Netflix, an individual with knowledge of the project told TheWrap.
Juneteenth, or June 19, celebrates the end of slavery in the U.S., though plot details about Barris and Williams’ musical are being kept under wraps.
Both Williams and Barris will also produce the film, with Williams producing alongside Mimi Valdes and Barris going through his production company Khalabo Ink Society.
Pharrell on Thursday night went on “Kimmel” and revealed that he had just come from Virginia and convinced Gov. Ralph Northam to make Juneteenth a state holiday.
“I called them and said, ‘Man, this is important for not only your own legacy, but the legacy of Virginia,” Williams told Jimmy Kimmel. “If you would be willing to officiate this and make this a paid holiday, I will travel for the first time out of my house. My wife is not playing no games with this COVID-19. As you know we have 600 children, we can’t afford to play any games. But this is serious because this is for not only me but for my ancestors that absolutely came through on the hull of a ship in Virginia over 400 years ago. So for me, this was incredibly symbolic, and it’s necessary.”
Juneteenth is a day of celebration and education that came about two years after Abraham Lincoln signed the Emancipation Proclamation. Learn more about the holiday here and check out the various programming dedicated to it.
Barris is represented by Artists First and attorney Gregg Gellman. Williams is represented by manager Ron Laffite and WME.
Deadline first reported the news of the project.