Mary J. Blige is set to bring one of her most iconic songs to life beyond vocals. The Queen of Hip-Hop Soul has expanded her programming portfolio with Lifetime to executive produce Real Love the movie based on her 1992 song of the same name from her debut studio album, What’s The 411. Blige is producing the film through her own production company, Blue Butterfly, alongside Ashaunna Ayars and Nicole Jackson. The film’s writers are Sonja Warfield and Rachel Ingram. Jordan and John Davis will also executive produce for Davis Entertainment, with Sony Pictures Television distributing the movie.
“Mary is one of those phenomenal talents that can do it all, and we are so thrilled to be able to partner with her again on this new opportunity to bring her music to life in the form of a movie that we know audiences will love,” Tanya Lopez, Lifetime and LMN’s EVP of Scripted Content, expressed in a press statement.
“I wrote ‘Real Love’ based on my real-life experiences and my fans connected to it in a deeply personal way,” added Mary J. Blige. “It’s exciting to now use this song and my music to create a new story by way of film, continuing to build on a pillar of the foundation of my production company, Blue Butterfly. My passions for acting and music now include developing diverse stories with music as the backdrop. I am grateful to Lifetime for their partnership in the story of Real Love.“
“Real Love” was Mary J. Blige’s first Top 10 record of her career, and was certified gold two months after its release. Additional music from the Grammy Award-winning singer will be incorporated throughout the movie, as a continuation of Blue Butterfly and Blige’s goal to bring more stories to life with music as the foundation.
The movie itself is a coming-of-age romantic drama, sharing the story of a character named Kendra, who sets off on her own for the first time as she attends a college in upstate New York. While at school, she is determined to focus on her studies, but when she meets her film class partner Ben, she tries her hardest to keep things professional. Along the way, she faces disapproving parents, financial hardship, and competition for the top spot in class. Amid the personal and educational struggles, Kendra and Ben find themselves falling hard for each other and ultimately learning the meaning of real love.