The Color Purple
Theatrical release poster by John Alvin
Directed bySteven Spielberg
Screenplay byMenno Meyjes
Based onThe Color Purple
by Alice Walker
Produced by
CinematographyAllen Daviau
Edited byMichael Kahn
Music byQuincy Jones
Distributed byWarner Bros. Pictures
Release date
  • December 18, 1985 (1985-12-18) (United States)
Running time
153 minutes[1]
CountryUnited States
Budget$15 million
Box office$98.4 million

The Color Purple is a 1985 American epic coming-of-age period drama film directed by Steven Spielberg and written by Menno Meyjes. It is based on the Pulitzer Prize–winning 1982 novel of the same name by Alice Walker and was Spielberg's eighth film as a director, marking a turning point in his career as it was a departure from the summer blockbusters for which he had become known. It was also the first feature film directed by Spielberg for which John Williams did not compose the music, instead featuring a score by Quincy Jones, who also produced. The film stars Whoopi Goldberg in her breakthrough role, with Danny Glover, Oprah Winfrey (in her film debut), Margaret Avery, and Adolph Caesar.[2][3]

Filmed in Anson and Union counties in North Carolina,[4] the film tells the story of a young African-American girl named Celie Harris and the brutal experiences she endured including domestic violence, incest, child sexual abuse, poverty, racism, and sexism.[5]

The film was a box office success, grossing $98.4 million against a budget of $15 million. The film received generally positive reviews from critics, with praise going to its acting (especially Goldberg's performance), direction, screenplay, musical score, and production values; criticism was directed by some for being "over-sentimental" and "stereotypical". The film was nominated for 11 Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Actress for Goldberg, Best Supporting Actress for both Avery and Winfrey, and Best Adapted Screenplay, but did not achieve a single win. It also received four Golden Globe Award nominations, with Goldberg winning Best Actress in a Drama. In 2006, the American Film Institute ranked the film 51st on its list of most inspiring movies.


The story revolves around the life of Celie Harris in early 20th-century rural Hartwell, Georgia. Harris is a teenage African-American girl who is brutally raped and abused by her father. She secretly gives birth to two of his children. After the births, the father quickly takes them from Celie and gives them away. Celie shares a strong bond with her youngest sister Nettie as they play and learn the alphabet together.

Albert "Mister" Johnson, a widower, wants to marry Nettie, but her father refuses to give her away because of his own sexual attraction to her. Instead, Celie is forced to marry Mister, who abuses her. One day, Nettie runs away from home because she is tired of fighting off her father's sexual advances and seeks shelter with Celie, where the two promise to write if they are separated. One day walking to school Mister attempts to rape Nettie. She fights him off and he kicks her out of the house. As she leaves, Nettie promises to fulfill the promise she and Celie made.

Years later, in 1916, Celie has grown meek from prolonged childhood abuse. Mister's son Harpo marries an assertive woman named Sofia. Celie envies Sofia's self-confidence and advises Harpo to beat her, but she fights back and confronts Celie, revealing her long history of abuse. She threatens to kill Harpo if he beats her again and tells Celie to do likewise to Mister. After years of constant abuse by Harpo, Sofia leaves and takes their children.

Mister and Harpo bring home the ailing Shug Avery, a blues singer and Mister's long-time mistress. Celie, who has slowly developed a fondness for Shug through a photograph sent to Mister, is in awe of Shug's strong will. She nurses Shug back to health, and Shug, in turn, takes a liking to her, writing and performing a song about her at Harpo's newly opened juke joint that he operates with his girlfriend, Squeak. Shug tells Celie she is moving to Memphis, and Celie confides to Shug that Mister beats her. Shug tells Celie that she is beautiful and that she loves her, and they share a tender moment where they kiss each other. Celie packs her things to follow Shug to Memphis, but is caught by Mister. Celie and Johnson watch as Shug leaves and Celie passes out on the ground.

Black dress worn by Oprah Winfrey as Sofia in The Color Purple

In town the mayor's wife, Ms. Millie compliments Sofia on her raising her children and repeatedly asks if she wants to work for her. Sofia says, "hell no," and when the mayor slaps her in the face she punches him. She is pistol-whipped, arrested and later imprisoned. Eight years later she is released, a shell of her former self, and immediately ordered by the judge to become Ms. Millie's maid. Ms. Millie agrees to let Sofia spend Christmas with her children. As she drives out Ms. Millie has trouble putting her car in gear and gets startled by the Black men who try to assist her. Frightened she asks Sofia to drive her home.

Shug returns to Celie and Mister's home with her new husband Grady, in town on business. Grady and Mister become intoxicated while Shug checks the mailbox. She finds a letter from Celie's sister in Africa. Shug gives Celie the letter from Nettie, who tells her that she is working for a couple who adopted Celie's children. Celie and Shug realize that Mister has been hiding Nettie's letters from Celie. While he and Grady are out drinking, Shug and Celie search the house, finding a hidden compartment under the floorboards containing bundles of Nettie's unread letters.

Engrossed in reading, Celie does not hear Mister's calls to shave him, and he slaps her. Celie sets her mind to kill Mister with his straight razor, but Shug stops her. At a family gathering, Celie finally speaks up against Mister and his years of abuse, to the delight of Shug. This fighting spirit also brings back Sofia's old self, and prompts Squeak to insist on men using her real name, Mary Agnes. Celie responds to Mister's taunts with a curse on him. Shug and Grady drive away, taking Celie and Mary with them.

Years later, Shug reunites with her father, who is a pastor, after years of estrangement because of his disapproval of the life path she chose. Mister has become a lonely drunk and let his home and farm fall into ruin. Harpo has made amends with Sofia; they now run the bar together, and Shug still performs there when she comes to town. Upon Celie's father's passing, she finally learns from her father's young, child-bride widow that he was not their biological father after all. When their mother died, "his" property was legally inherited by Celie and Nettie, and the home and shop that had belonged to her biological father pass to Celie.

Celie begins to operate a tailor shop. Mister receives a letter from the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Service addressed to Celie, takes money from his secret stash, and arranges for Nettie and her family, including Celie's children to return to the U.S. from Africa. While Mister watches from a distance, Celie, Nettie, and the children reunite, and the two sisters bond over a hand-clapping game from their childhood.




Director/co-producer Steven Spielberg (left), composer/co-producer Quincy Jones and author of the novel Alice Walker.

Alice Walker was initially reluctant to sell the film rights to her novel, due to Hollywood's portrayal of female and African American characters. She only agreed to executive producers Jon Peters and Peter Guber's offer after consulting with friends, who agreed the only way to improve representation of minorities was to work within the system.[6] Walker's contract stipulated that she would serve as project consultant and that 50% of the production team, aside from the cast, would be African American, female, or "people of the Third World."[6] Walker wrote an initial screenplay draft, but was replaced by Dutch-born writer Menno Meyjes, under the provision that she be given final script approval. Walker worked as an uncredited script doctor, and coached actors in their use of a Southern African American Vernacular English dialect.

Music mogul Quincy Jones, whose only prior film experience was as a composer, served as producer and approached Steven Spielberg to direct. Spielberg was initially reluctant to take the job, feeling his knowledge of the Deep South was inadequate and that the film should be directed by someone of color. Walker was likewise skeptical but was convinced otherwise after watching E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial. Spielberg waived his usual $15 million salary in lieu of the Directors Guild of America minimum of $40,000.[6] He chose to play down the lesbian subtext between Celie and Shug, feeling that it would increase the rating if he didn't.[7]


Whoopi Goldberg was known primarily as a stage performer when she was cast as Celie Harris.

Rather than cast established stars, Walker sought out lesser-known actors to play the principal roles, since their rise from obscurity represented the experience of characters in her novels.[6] Whoopi Goldberg was a comedic stage performer who had starred in an acclaimed one-woman show on Broadway but whose only prior film role was in a 1982 avant-garde film, Citizen: I'm Not Losing My Mind, I'm Giving It Away. Oprah Winfrey was a radio and television host without prior acting experience, who was hired at Jones's insistence.[8] After lobbying producers for the part, 29-year-old Goldberg was personally selected by Walker after she saw her stand-up.[6] Goldberg's audition for Spielberg, where both Jones and Michael Jackson were present, saw her perform a routine involving a stoned E.T. being arrested for drug possession.[9]

Other cast members, such as Danny Glover, Adolph Caesar, and Carl Anderson, were predominantly stage performers. Akosua Busia was a graduate of the Royal Central School of Speech and Drama, and the daughter of Ghanaian prime minister Kofi Abrefa Busia. Goldberg's real-life daughter Alex Martin has a minor role as one of the children in the Easter sequence.[10]

Margaret Avery was a veteran actress who had previously won an NAACP Image Award for the made-for-television film Louis Armstrong – Chicago Style. Spielberg had pursued singers Chaka Khan and Tina Turner but both turned it down.[11][12] Patti LaBelle and Sheryl Lee Ralph also auditioned, and Phyllis Hyman was considered. Though Avery had prior musical experience, her singing voice was dubbed by Táta Vega.


While the novel was based on Walker's childhood home of Eatonton, Georgia, the film was shot predominantly in James C. Bennett's house,[13] located in Lilesville (Anson County), and Union County in North Carolina during the summer months.[4] Sets were constructed at an Antebellum-era plantation outside Wadesboro, while the town of Marshville had its paved roads covered in mud and clay to match the early 20th-century setting. The church was a real 60-year-old Baptist chapel that was moved piece-by-piece from its original location. Due to the summer heat, the winter sequences were shot with fabricated snow. Additional scenes were filmed on the Universal Studios Hollywood backlot, and a second unit led by Frank Marshall traveled to Kenya to shoot scenes in Nairobi and in the Maasai regions.[6]

Spielberg encouraged both Goldberg and Winfrey to ad lib during filming, including Sofia's speech at the dinner table. Quincy Jones' insistence on giving more dialogue to Winfrey sparked an apparent feud between her and Goldberg that lasted several years afterwards.[14][15]


Main article: The Color Purple: Music From the Motion Picture

The Color Purple's film score was written by Quincy Jones, the first feature film directed by Spielberg for which John Williams did not compose the music. The score combines elements of classical and period jazz, blues, and gospel, and features several popular songs of the era. The track Miss Celie's Blues (Sister), performed in the film by the character Shug (Avery; dubbed by Táta Vega), later gained popularity as a concert piece.

Due to his dual responsibilities as both producer and composer, Jones delegated many of the tasks to a team of eleven other musicians and arrangers. This led to a dispute during the Academy Awards over the nominees for Best Original Score. While Jones is the sole credited composer of the film, the nomination lists all twelve musicians (Jones, Chris Boardman, Jorge Calandrelli, Andraé Crouch, Jack Hayes, Jerry Hey, Randy Kerber, Jeremy Lubbock, Joel Rosenbaum, Caiphus Semenya, Fred Steiner and Rod Temperton).


The Color Purple premiered on December 18, 1985, in Los Angeles. However, the premiere was picketed by members of the NAACP for its depiction of rape.[16] The film went into general release in the United States on February 7, 1986.[17] It was also shown at the 1986 Cannes Film Festival as a non-competing title.[18]


Box office

The Color Purple was a success at the box office, staying in U.S. theaters for 21 weeks,[17] and grossing over $98.4 million worldwide.[19] In terms of box office income, it ranked as the number one rated PG-13 film released in 1985, and number four overall.[17]

Critical response

On review aggregator Rotten Tomatoes, the film holds an approval rating of 73% based on 125 reviews, with an average rating of 7.6/10. The website's critical consensus reads: "It might have been better served by a filmmaker with a deeper connection to the source material, but The Color Purple remains a worthy, well-acted adaptation of Alice Walker's classic novel."[21] On Metacritic, the film received a weighted average score of 78 out of 100 based on seven critics, indicating "generally favorable reviews".[22]

Roger Ebert of the Chicago Sun-Times awarded the film four stars, calling it "the year's best film". He also praised Whoopi Goldberg, calling her role "one of the most amazing debut performances in movie history" and predicting she would win the Academy Award for Best Actress; she was nominated but lost to Geraldine Page, for her performance in The Trip to Bountiful. Ebert wrote of The Color Purple:

The world of Celie and the others is created so forcibly in this movie that their corner of the South becomes one of those movie places – like Oz, like Tara, like Casablanca – that lay claim to their own geography in our imaginations. The affirmation at the end of the film is so joyous that this is one of the few movies in a long time that inspires tears of happiness, and earns them.[23]

Ebert's long-time television collaborator, Gene Siskel of the Chicago Tribune, praised the film as "triumphantly emotional and brave", calling it Spielberg's "successful attempt to enlarge his reputation as a director of youthful entertainments." Siskel wrote that The Color Purple was "a plea for respect for black women." Although acknowledging that the film was a period drama, he praised its "... incredibly strong stand against the way black men treat black women. Cruel is too kind a word to describe their behavior. The principal black men in The Color Purple use their women – both wives and daughters – as sexual chattel."[24]

The New York Times film critic Janet Maslin noted the film's divergence from Walker's book, but made the case that this shift works:

Mr. Spielberg has looked on the sunny side of Miss Walker's novel, fashioning a grand, multi-hanky entertainment that is as pretty and lavish as the book is plain. If the book is set in the harsh, impoverished atmosphere of rural Georgia, the movie unfolds in a cozy, comfortable, flower-filled wonderland. ... Some parts of it are rapturous and stirring, others hugely improbable, and the film moves unpredictably from one mode to another. From another director, this might be fatally confusing, but Mr. Spielberg's showmanship is still with him. Although the combination of his sensibilities and Miss Walker's amounts to a colossal mismatch, Mr. Spielberg's Color Purple manages to have momentum, warmth and staying power all the same.[25]

Variety found the film over-sentimental, writing, "there are some great scenes and great performances in The Color Purple, but it is not a great film. Steven Spielberg's turn at 'serious' film-making is marred in more than one place by overblown production that threatens to drown in its own emotions."[26]

Filmmaker Oliver Stone praised the film, saying it's "an excellent movie, and it was an attempt to deal with an issue that had been overlooked, and it wouldn't have been done if it hadn't been Spielberg. And it's not like everyone says, that he ruined the book. That's horseshit. Nobody was going to do the book. He made the book live again."[27] In 2004, Ebert included The Color Purple in his book series The Great Movies. He stated that "I can see its flaws more easily than when I named it the best film of 1985, but I can also understand why it moved me so deeply, and why the greatness of some films depends not on their perfection or logic, but on their heart."[28]


In addition, some critics alleged that the film stereotyped black people in general[29] and black men in particular,[30] pointing to the fact that Spielberg, had directed a predominantly African-American story.[31] In response, Spielberg said, "Most of the criticism came from directors [who] felt that we had overlooked them, and that it should have been a black director telling a black story. That was the main criticism. The other criticism was that I had softened the book. I have always copped to that. I made the movie I wanted to make from Alice Walker's book. There were certain things in the [lesbian] relationship between Shug Avery and Celie that were finely detailed in Alice's book, that I didn't feel could get a [PG-13] rating. And I was shy about it. In that sense, perhaps I was the wrong director to acquit some of the more sexually honest encounters between Shug and Celie, because I did soften those. I basically took something that was extremely erotic and very intentional, and I reduced it to a simple kiss. I got a lot of criticism for that."[32]

During the time and since then it has had an intense debate among civil rights activists, commentators, and film critics. The NAACP accused the film of "stereotypical portrayals of black males". Clarence Page of the Chicago Tribune wrote, "It was a debate that divided much of the nation`s black intelligentsia against itself. Author James Baldwin accused the movie and its director, Steven Spielberg, of mangling the poetic vision of Alice Walker`s Pulitzer Prize-winning novel. Black feminist Michele Wallace said the movie smothered Walker`s feminist message in syrupy Disney-like sentimentality. Black author Ishmael Reed... called the book a near-criminal assault on black family life and heterosexual relationships."[33]

In 2022, writer Aisha Harris revisited the controversy on NPR's Pop Culture Happy Hour saying, "when it first came out, there was a lot of tension and debate about how it depicted Black men and Black women and the Black family". Harris later detailed, "nearly all of the Black men in the movie are depicted as cold-hearted, violent abusers. To some audiences, especially Black men, The Color Purple was the mainstream reinforcement of a deeply damaging and persistent perception".[34]

The film was fiercely defended by its stars including Oprah Winfrey who said, "It's one woman's story. It was not meant to be the history of every black man or woman in this country and I wish they'd just shut up about it". Whoopi Goldberg said "We got a lot of shit from a lot of people [and] the NAACP... I was really pissed off. [Spielberg] made a damn fine film".[35]


The Color Purple was nominated for 11 Academy Awards (including Best Picture, Best Actress for Goldberg and Best Supporting Actress for both Avery and Winfrey).[36] It failed to win any of them, tying the record set by 1977's The Turning Point for the most Oscar nominations without a single win.[30] Some organizations such as the NAACP protested the decision of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences to not award the film any categories.[33]

Steven Spielberg received his first Directors Guild of America Award at the 38th awards ceremony for Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Motion Pictures. He became the first director to win the award without even being nominated for the Academy Award for Best Director.

Award Category Nominee(s) Result
Academy Awards[37] Best Picture Steven Spielberg, Kathleen Kennedy, Frank Marshall, and Quincy Jones Nominated
Best Actress Whoopi Goldberg Nominated
Best Supporting Actress Margaret Avery Nominated
Oprah Winfrey Nominated
Best Screenplay – Based on Material from Another Medium Menno Meyjes Nominated
Best Art Direction Art Direction: J. Michael Riva and Bo Welch;
Set Decoration: Linda DeScenna
Best Cinematography Allen Daviau Nominated
Best Costume Design Aggie Guerard Rodgers Nominated
Best Makeup Ken Chase Nominated
Best Original Score Chris Boardman, Jorge Calandrelli, Andraé Crouch, Jack Hayes,
Jerry Hey, Quincy Jones, Randy Kerber, Jeremy Lubbock,
Joel Rosenbaum, Caiphus Semenya, Fred Steiner, and Rod Temperton
Best Original Song "Miss Celie's Blues"
Music by Quincy Jones and Rod Temperton;
Lyrics by Quincy Jones, Rod Temperton, and Lionel Richie
All Def Movie Awards Most Quoted Movie Nominated
ASCAP Film and Television Music Awards Top Box Office Films Chris Boardman, Jorge Calandrelli, Andraé Crouch, Jack Hayes,
Quincy Jones, Joel Rosenbaum, Fred Steiner, and Rod Temperton
Black Movie Awards Classic Cinema Hall of Fame Won
Blue Ribbon Awards Best Foreign Film Steven Spielberg Won
British Academy Film Awards Best Adapted Screenplay Menno Meyjes Nominated
British Society of Cinematographers Best Cinematography Allen Daviau Nominated
Casting Society of America Awards Best Casting for Feature Film – Drama Reuben Cannon Won
Directors Guild of America Awards Outstanding Directorial Achievement in Motion Pictures Steven Spielberg Won
Golden Globe Awards[38] Best Motion Picture – Drama Nominated
Best Director – Motion Picture Steven Spielberg Nominated
Best Actress in a Motion Picture – Drama Whoopi Goldberg Won
Best Supporting Actress – Motion Picture Oprah Winfrey Nominated
Best Original Score – Motion Picture Quincy Jones Nominated
Heartland Film Festival Truly Moving Picture Steven Spielberg Won
Japan Academy Film Prize Outstanding Foreign Language Film Nominated
Kansas City Film Critics Circle Awards Best Director Steven Spielberg Won
Los Angeles Film Critics Association Awards Best Actress Whoopi Goldberg Runner-up
Best Supporting Actress Oprah Winfrey Runner-up
New Generation Award Whoopi Goldberg Runner-up
NAACP Image Awards Outstanding Motion Picture Won
Outstanding Actress in a Motion Picture Whoopi Goldberg Won
National Board of Review Awards Top Ten Films Won
Best Film Won
Best Actress Whoopi Goldberg Won
Online Film & Television Association Awards Hall of Fame – Motion Picture Won
Writers Guild of America Awards Best Screenplay – Based on Material from Another Medium Menno Meyjes Nominated

American Film Institute

Musical film adaptation

Main article: The Color Purple (2023 film)

On November 2, 2018, it was announced that a film adaptation of the 2005 stage musical version was in development.[40] Spielberg and Jones returned to co-produce, alongside the stage production's producers Winfrey and Scott Sanders. On August 25, 2020, it was announced that Marcus Gardley would pen the screenplay and Black is King's Blitz Bazawule would direct.[41][42][43] On December 23, 2020, it was announced that Alice Walker, Rebecca Walker, Kristie Macosko Krieger, Carla Gardini and Mara Jacobs would executive produce.[44] H.E.R. and Corey Hawkins were cast in August 2021.[45] The film was released on December 25, 2023.[44] It received positive reviews from critics and received numerous accolades, including a nomination for Danielle Brooks in Best Supporting Actress at the 96th Academy Awards as well as nominations for two Golden Globe Awards, two BAFTA Awards, two Screen Actors Guild Award, and five Critics' Choice Awards. It also earned 19 nominations at the 2024 Black Reel Awards, winning nine; both totals were a record for a musical.[46]

See also


  1. ^ "The Color Purple (15)". BBFC. April 10, 1986. Retrieved January 18, 2024.
  2. ^ Stewart, Robert W. (March 7, 1986). "Adolph Caesar: Fatal Heart Attack Fells Actor on Set". Los Angeles Times. ISSN 0458-3035. Retrieved November 9, 2018.
  3. ^ "Actor Adolph Caesar dead at 52". UPI News. March 7, 1986. Retrieved February 18, 2024.
  4. ^ a b "The Color Purple filming locations". The 80s Movie Rewind. Retrieved January 17, 2010.
  5. ^ Corliss, Richard (December 23, 1985). "Cinema: The Three Faces of Steve the Color Purple". Time. Archived from the original on June 4, 2008. Retrieved October 29, 2010.
  6. ^ a b c d e f "The Color Purple". AFI Catalog of Feature Films. Retrieved May 29, 2021.
  7. ^ Spielberg, Steven (December 2, 2011). "Steven Spielberg: The EW interview". Entertainment Weekly (Q&A). Interviewed by Anthony Breznican. eISSN 1049-0434. Retrieved September 16, 2023. There were certain things in the [lesbian] relationship between Shug Avery and Celie that were finely detailed in Alice's book, that I didn't feel could get a [PG-13] rating. And I was shy about it.
  8. ^ Scott, Walter (September 20, 2018). "The Remarkable Quincy Jones: 5 Icons Whose Lives Where Changed by Jones". Parade. Retrieved June 1, 2021.
  9. ^ "Whoopi Goldberg Recalls Her "Color Purple" Audition". The Global Herald. May 6, 2020. Retrieved May 29, 2021.
  10. ^ "15 Lesser-Known Facts About Whoopi Goldberg's Daughter, Alex Martin". TheThings. April 4, 2020. Retrieved June 1, 2021.
  11. ^ McArdle, Tommy (November 4, 2022). "Chaka Khan Says She Turned Down Steven Spielberg for 'The Color Purple': 'Woulda Been Hot'". People. Retrieved February 18, 2024.
  12. ^ Robertson, Nan (February 13, 1986). "Actresses' Varied Roads to 'The Color Purple'". The New York Times. p. C21. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved May 29, 2021.
  13. ^ "James C. Bennett's House". CivilWarTalk. June 7, 2015. Retrieved June 7, 2015.
  14. ^ "Whoopi Goldberg: Then and Now". Retrieved May 30, 2021.
  15. ^ "Oprah Winfrey Addresses Longtime Beef With Whoopi Goldberg During "Color Purple" Reunion". Praise Radio. November 13, 2010. Retrieved February 18, 2024.
  16. ^ Shipp, E.R. (January 27, 1986). "Blacks in Heated Debate Over 'The Color Purple'". The New York Times. Retrieved January 5, 2022.
  17. ^ a b c "The Color Purple". Box Office Mojo. Accessed December 9, 2011.
  18. ^ "The Color Purple". Festival de Cannes. Retrieved February 10, 2020.
  19. ^ Matthews, Jack (December 25, 1985). "A Strong Start for 'Color Purple' in Christmas Box Office Race". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved October 29, 2010.
  20. ^ "Alice Walker". Desert Island Discs. May 19, 2013. BBC Radio 4. Retrieved January 18, 2014.
  21. ^ "The Color Purple (1985)". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved December 26, 2023.
  22. ^ "The Color Purple Reviews". Metacritic. Retrieved July 17, 2019.
  23. ^ Ebert, Roger (December 20, 1985). "The Color Purple". Chicago Sun-Times. Retrieved October 30, 2010.
  24. ^ Siskel, Gene (December 20, 1985). "Color Purple: Powerful, Daring, Sweetly Uplifting". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved October 30, 2010.
  25. ^ Maslin, Janet (December 18, 1985). "Film: 'The Color Purple,' from Steven Spielberg". The New York Times. Retrieved October 29, 2010.
  26. ^ "The Color Purple". Variety. December 31, 1984. Retrieved October 30, 2010.
  27. ^ Cooper, Marc. Oliver Stone interview from Playboy Magazine (1988), in Stone, Oliver and Silet, Charles L.P., editors. Oliver Stone—Interviews, University Press of Mississippi (2006), p. 87.
  28. ^ Ebert, Roger (March 28, 2004). "The Color Purple Movie Review (1985)". Chicago Sun-Times. Retrieved June 4, 2015 – via
  29. ^ Clegg II, Legrand H. (February 16, 1986). "Bad Black Roles In 'Purple'". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved October 30, 2010.
  30. ^ a b Friendly, David T. (March 27, 1986). "Academy Hits Racism Accusation". Los Angeles Times. Archived from the original on September 5, 2021. Retrieved September 5, 2021.
  31. ^ Matthews, Jack (January 31, 1986). "3 'Color Purple' Actresses Talk About Its Impact". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved October 30, 2010.
  32. ^ Breznican, Anthony (December 2, 2011). "Steven Spielberg: The EW interview". Entertainment Weekly. Retrieved February 10, 2020.
  33. ^ a b Page, Clarence (March 30, 1986). "'The Color Purple' Is Blacked Out". Chicago Tribune. Retrieved December 18, 2023.
  34. ^ "Revisiting 'The Color Purple' wars". Pop Culture Happy Hour. November 20, 2022. Retrieved February 18, 2024.
  35. ^ "Whoopi Goldberg on controversy over The Color Purple". Television Academy. Retrieved December 18, 2023.
  36. ^ "'Out of Africa' Ties as Oscar Nominees: 11 Citations; Spielberg Not Named". Los Angeles Times. February 5, 1986. Archived from the original on September 5, 2021. Retrieved September 5, 2021.
  37. ^ "The 58th Academy Awards│ 1986". Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences. Archived from the original on September 5, 2021. Retrieved September 5, 2021.
  38. ^ "Winners & Nominees 1986 Golden Globes". Golden Globes. Retrieved September 16, 2018.
  39. ^ "AFI's 100 YEARS…100 CHEERS". American Film Institute. Retrieved December 13, 2023.
  40. ^ McPhee, Ryan (November 2, 2018). "Film Adaptation of The Color Purple Musical in Development". Playbill.
  41. ^ Hempstead, Pete (September 2, 2020). "Crossword: Get Ready for The Color Purple Movie Musical With This Week's Puzzle". TheaterMania.
  42. ^ "Ghana's Blitz the Ambassador to direct Warner Bros' 'The Colour Purple'". GhanaWeb. August 26, 2020.
  43. ^ D'Alessandro, Anthony (August 24, 2020). "'The Color Purple' Feature Musical: 'Black Is King's Blitz Bazawule Set To Direct". Deadline Hollywood.
  44. ^ a b Rubin, Rebecca (December 23, 2020). "Warner Bros. to Release 'Mad Max: Fury Road' Prequel and 'The Color Purple' Musical in Theaters in 2023". Variety. Retrieved July 27, 2021.
  45. ^ Galuppo, Mia (August 27, 2021). "H.E.R. to Make Acting Debut in 'The Color Purple' Movie Musical (Exclusive)". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved September 1, 2021.
  46. ^ Complex, Valerie (January 17, 2024). "Black Reel Awards Reveals Winners Of Film And Television Categories; 'American Fiction' And 'The Color Purple' Took Home Top Honors". Deadline Hollywood. Retrieved January 22, 2024.