Steel Magnolias, the 1989 tearjerker, is getting a makeover. Lifetime’s upcoming version will still be about a bunch of girlfriends in Louisiana, but will bring the story to the new millennium and will make one other very big change.
Perhaps inspired by the raging success of The Help this summer, Lifetime is going southern with a retooled Steel Magnolias. The revamp will be the same story, but with an all-black cast, which means it’s sure add a few nods to race and racism in the heartbreaking tale of strength, frailty, family and friendship.
That’s right, Lifetime is gearing up to remake the classic with an all-black cast and, according to Deadline, the network has already tapped director Kenny Leon for the project. The Broadway player was not only involved in the 2008 TV remake of A Raisin in the Sun with Sean Combs, Phylicia Rashad, Audra McDonald and Sanaa Lathan, but he also earned a Tony nomination for his work on Fences, starring Denzel Washington and The Help‘s Viola Davis.
The original Magnolias is one of the biggest tearjerkers of all time. Though it didn’t officially beat The Champ, SheKnows suspects many of our readers would disagree. The big screen hit starred heavy-weights Sally Field, Dolly Parton, Shirley MacLaine, Darryl Hannah, Olympia Dukakis and Julia Roberts.
With casting for the remake reportedly about to begin, it will be interesting to see who Leon can lure into the TV movie, considering his connections — not to mention his rep, which includes having directed Davis and Washington to Tony wins.
If you can’t wait to get your fix of Southern revamping, you don’t have to: Footloose is landing this weekend!
Image: TriStar Pictures