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Blair Underwood, Keke Palmer Join Cicely Tyson, Vanessa Williams In ‘Trip to Bountiful’ Film Adaptation

Blair Underwood, Keke Palmer Join Cicely Tyson, Vanessa Williams In 'Trip to Bountiful' Film Adaptation

An update to last week’s news the Broadway revival of The Trip to Bountiful with an all-black starring cast, is heading to your TV screens, courtesy of the Lifetime TV network.

Joining Cicely Tyson and Vanessa Williams, who’ll both be reprising their roles in the telepic (both starred in the play), will be Blair Underwood (likely assuming the role that Cuba Gooding Jr. played in the Broadway revival, eventually replaced by by Leon Addison Brown) and Keke Palmer (taking Condola Rashad’s role in the play; later replaced by Adepero Oduye).

Shooting is set to take place in Atlanta, GA throughout the month of November.

Cicely Tyson starred in the Broadway revival of Horton Foote’s 1953 drama The Trip to Bountiful, which was directed by Michael Wilson.

Here’s the entire plot of the play:

Set in the 1940s, the play tells the story of an elderly woman, Carrie Watts, who wants to return home to the small town where she grew up, but is frequently stopped from leaving Houston, Texas by her daughter-in-law, and an overprotective son who won’t let her travel alone. However, old Mrs. Watts is determined to outwit her son and bossy daughter-in-law, and sets out to catch a train, only to find that trains don’t go to Bountiful anymore. She eventually boards a bus to a town near her childhood home. On the journey, she befriends a girl traveling alone and reminisces about her younger years and grieves for her lost relatives. Her son and daughter-in-law eventually track her down, with the help of the local police force. However, Mrs. Watts is determined. The local sheriff, moved by her yearning to visit her girlhood home, offers to drive her out to what remains of Bountiful. The village is deserted, and the few remaining houses are derelict. Mrs. Watts is moved to tears as she surveys her father’s land and the remains of the family home. Her son eventually turns up, and drives her back to Houston.

Ms. Tyson played Carrie Watts (she’ll reprise her role in the film); Gooding Jr. was her overprotective son – a role that will be played by Blair Underwood in the film adaptation; Williams, her bossy daughter-in-law (she’ll also reprise her role in the film); and Rashad played the girl traveling alone who Carrie befriends on her journey – Keke Palmer will now be that girl in the film.

The play was first produced as a teleplay on NBC in 1953, starring Lillian Gish as Carrie Watts; it would later premiere on Broadway that same year with the same cast. So we’re seeing a reverse of that (going from Broadway to TV this time around).

And in 1985, a film version of the play was produced, and starred Geraldine Page, who won an Academy Award for her performance.

Michael Wilson, who directed the play, will also helm the TV movie.

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