Andra Day goes through a phase of Billie Holiday's career

Carla Harmon
January 13, 2021

Andra Day transforms into jazz singer Billie Holiday in the first trailer for her big starring debut.

Andra Day stars as Billie Holiday in the new biopic, which will touch on her romance with actress Tallulah Bankhead. It centers on her 1939 song about lynching, "Strange Fruit", which made her a target of the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

'The United States vs. Billie Holiday' Trailer: Andra Day Goes to Court Over

"Don't you know who this is?..."

The trailer, released on Monday (11 January), shows Holiday and her lover Tallulah Bankhead (played by Natasha Lyonne) visiting a jewellery store. Lyonne's character asks, while Holiday tells the jeweller that she's looking for something "downright flashy".

Focuses on Holiday during her career as she is targeted by the Federal Department of Narcotics with an undercover sting operation led by black Federal Agent Jimmy Fletcher, with whom she had a tumultuous affair.

The United States vs. Billie Holiday hits the Hulu catalog on February 26th. However, the real reason was the true stories behind her songs, including "Strange Fruit".

In a statement announcing the movie's upcoming release, director Lee Daniels said: "Whether you are new to the story and legacy of Billie Holiday or know every note she ever sang, I do hope our celebration of this complex woman does justice to a great musical legend and civil rights activist whose artistry resonates as well today, as it did 80 years ago". "When you think of Billie Holiday, you think of this brilliant tortured jazz singer that happened to have been a drug addict". It's the quote that defined Spider-Man, but one that sadly very few adhere to in real life as most people in a position of power or fame use it as an opportunity to just keep exploiting those around them.

Audra McDonald also won a Tony Award for playing Holiday on-stage in Lady Day at Emerson's Bar and Grill.

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