Where Was The Color Purple Filmed? Filming Locations Of A 1985 Epic Drama!


Do you have a taste for fine art? Do you distinguish yourself as a film connoisseur? Because if you do, you’d be more than happy to read this article, where I discuss the epic film, The Color Purple. And later share with you, where was The Color Purple filmed.

The American drama film, The Color Purple, released in 1985 is based on the award winning novel by Alice Walker, with the same name. Director Steven Spielberg broke his image of being a “commercial filmmaker” with this fine film. The Color Purple presents a commentary about the atrocities and social injustice that African-American women had to face, even in the late 20s in America.

The film turned out to be a huge commercial success, upon its release. Collecting over $142 million in global box office collection! The critics equally adored The Color Purple, which made the movie gather over 14 prestigious awards and 23 nominations.

Right, now let’s briefly discuss the plot of the movie. So, that you may get a better idea about the basic storyline. Furthermore, I’ll also let you in on where was The Color Purple filmed, too.

Plot Of The Color Purple | What’s It About

The Color Purple, opens by taking us to the early 1900s in America!  Where a young African American girl named Celie, is shown to live with an abusive father and a younger sister in the city of Hartwell in Hart County. Later in the film, Celie is forced by her father to marry an even more sadistic man named, Albert Johnson. 

Celie’s younger sister Nettie, abandons her father too, and runs off to her sister to seek refuge. But Nettie soon enough discovers Celie’s husband, Johnson to be an absolute evil man, who tries to molest her at every given opportunity.

As the story progresses we can see the character of Johnson growing darker and sinister with each sequence. He is seen to indulge himself in all sorts of vices such as prostitution, gambling, alcohol abuse etc in the film. But soon, all this comes to an end when Celie decides to finally retaliate against it.

Eventually, Celie walks out of Johnsons’, in search for a better life. The lead actress then comes across the news about her father’s demise and that she is to inherit the house and the shop. Celie independently starts a tailoring business to earn her livelihood! The credits roll as Nettie and Celie finally reunite.

OK, so it’s about time for us to find out where was The Color Purple filmed. So that you can enjoy the gorgeous locations that were used to film this infamous drama flick!

Where Was The Color Purple Filmed? Let’s Know This Emotional Film Closely!!

The original novel by Alice Walker, that The Color Purple is based on, was set in Georgia. However, Director Spielberg decided to shoot the film in the state of North Carolina, which was historically famous for slave trades and other atrocities against the people of color. 

Majority of the filming took place in America while some scenes featured a few sequences from the African continent! An additional team of filming crew was sent to Kenya to capture the scenes of Nairobi and Masaai.

The principal photography began in the summer of 1985 and was completed in a couple of months. Let us now dig deep and find out the exact filming locations of The Color Purple.

North Carolina, USA

Where Was The Color Purple Filmed? Filming Locations Of A 1985 Epic Drama!

The production unit arrived at Anson County to shoot the opening scenes. A house located in the Lilesville town, was scouted by the filming crew. And was later used for shooting the outdoor scenes of the house that Celie is shown to live with her father.

Later to film other sequences, the crew went to the neighboring town of Wadesboro. A make-believe set was built by the filming crew, to shoot the interior sequences. This set was built in such a way that could be modified to film a number of scenes that portrayed different settings.

Soon after the production unit moved to Union County, in the town of Marshville. The sequence which features the barbershop in the film, was shot here. The filming crew had to alter the appearance of the surroundings, to make it look like a town from the early 1900s.

Here’s a list of a couple films and shows that you may check out, such as The Black Phone, Scream, The Conjuring, Banshee, Forrest Gump, One Tree Hill, The Hunger Games, Tusk and The Green Mile which were also filmed in the same location!

Notable to mention other sequences in America, were filmed in Universal Studios, California. The backlot of the Universal Studios was used by director Spielberg to recreate the interior scenes Celie’s house after she leaves Johnson in the film.

Kenya, Africa

Where Was The Color Purple Filmed? Filming Locations Of A 1985 Epic Drama!

While the majority of the shooting was taking place in America. The secondary filming team arrived in the East African country of Kenya. Outdoor scenes that required to portray the urban setting of an African country were filmed in Nairobi. 

However, to depict the scenes that featured the wild and indigenous African tribes in the film, the crew traveled to the Masaai region. The team was well equipped and prepared in advance. The constant communication with the main production unit in America, sorted most of the complications that took place during filming. 

Here are a bunch of places that you can surely look up, such as Amboseli National Park, Lake Nakuru, Mombasa, Tsavo East National Park, and Hells Gate National Park should you decide to go for a jungle ride in Africa, anytime soon!

Final Words

Now you know where was The Color Purple filmed, right? I hope you enjoyed the read and found what you were looking for. To check out other informative and entertaining articles, visit Viebly. And don’t forget to mention your thoughts in the comment section below.

Who Are The Cast Members Of The Film The Color Purple?

The cast members of the film, The Color Purple includes Whoopi Goldberg, Rae Dawn Chong, Margaret Avery, Danny Glover and Adolph Caesar.

Who Wrote The Screenplay Of The Film The Color Purple?

Menno Meyjes wrote the screenplay of the film, The Color Purple.

What Is The Runtime Of Film The Color Purple?

2h 34m is the runtime of the film, The Color Purple.

Is The Film The Color Purple, Based On A True Story?

The film, The Color Purple is based on a novel by Alice Walker. The events shown in the film are slightly exaggerated!

Who Is The Music Director Of The Film The Color Purple?

Quincy Jones is the music director of the film, The Color Purple

What Is The Rating Of The Film The Color Purple?

The Color Purple has a PG-13 rating.

Ujwal Mattoo
Ujwal Mattoo
With full journalism and half engineering background, Ujwal has hands in both the tech and creative fields. He is a film enthusiast who loves all kinds of genres. As much as he enjoys watching movies, he is always amused to know more and write about the locations to feed his hunger for traveling. In this world of fictional louds, he voices his opinions softly! He is either busy writing or playing with Milo, his dog!


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