The project is based on the Langston Hughes libretto that was adapted into a Broadway musical in 1961. The story follows a young boy from Baltimore, who spends Christmas in Harlem with the grandparents he has never met. The boy learns about the importance of family through his grandfather's Christmas Eve sermon. Forest Whitaker and Angela Bassett are playing the boy's grandparents, with Jennifer Hudson portraying his mother, who had a falling out with her father years ago. No details were given regarding Tyrese Gibson's character, but it is believed that this will be the first time the actor sings on film.
Kasi Lemmons is directing from her own screenplay, adapted from the Langston Hughes libretto. William Horberg, Celine Rattray, Galt Niederhoffer, and Daniela Taplin Lundberg are producing. Shooting is currently under way in New York City.