"She's made something of herself and you can't take it because she's strong, beautiful, and Black."

By Rosy Cordero
January 11, 2021 at 08:03 PM EST
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The life and struggles of jazz legend Billie Holiday, also known as Lady Day, will unravel in Hulu's The United States Vs. Billie Holiday, a biopic set to be release on Feb. 26.

Grammy nominated singer Andra Day portrays Holiday, a Black woman who outraged the U.S. government by singing her lynching protest song "Strange Fruit" for integrated audiences during the height of Jim Crowe America. The authorities used her struggle with drugs and alcohol, which she used to numb the pain of trauma endured as a poor Black child trying to survive with limited opportunities, to silence the powerful and influential voice of the people.

Credit: Paramount Pictures/Takashi Seida

Chief Harry Anslinger (Garrett Hedlund) of the Federal Bureau of Narcotics hired a Black man named Jimmy Fletcher (Trevante Rhodes) to infiltrate Holiday's inner circle to bring her down, but he ends up falling for Holiday. The Lee Daniels-directed film promises to dive into the events that led to her demise and what role the government played in it.

But Holiday's life was a tragedy. She died on July 17, 1959 broke and handcuffed to a hospital bed under the watch of federal agents from pulmonary edema and heart failure caused by cirrhosis of the liver. She was 44.

Watch the trailer in full above.

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