The Preacher’s Wife is a 1996 American comedy-drama film directed by Penny Marshall and starring Denzel Washington, Whitney Houston, and Courtney B. Vance. It is a remake of the 1947 film The Bishop’s Wife, which in turn was based on the novel of the same name by Robert Nathan.
- Starring : Denzel Washington / Whitney Houston
- Genre : Comedy / Drama / Fantasy / Romance
- Country : United States
- Language : English
- Director : Penny Marshall
- Production : Mundy Lane Entertainment / Parkway Productions / The Samuel Goldwyn Company / Touchstone Pictures
- Distributor : Buena Vista Pictures / American Broadcasting Company (ABC) / Buena Vista International / Buena Vista Home Entertainment / Buena Vista Home Video / Divisa Home Video / Gativideo / Laurenfilm / Touchstone Home Entertainment / Touchstone Home Video / Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment / Warner Home Video
The Preacher’s Wife movie
The Preacher’s Wife release date
- December 13, 1996 : USA
- December 21, 1996 : Japan
- January 16, 1997 : Germany
- January 17, 1997 : UK
- January 17, 1997 : Ireland
- February 21, 1997 : Spain
- February 27, 1997 : Australia
- April 24, 1997 : Singapore
- November 21, 1997 : Sweden
- December 24, 1997 : France
The Preacher’s Wife cast
- Denzel Washington as Dudley
- Whitney Houston as Julia Biggs
- Courtney B. Vance as Reverend Henry Biggs
- Gregory Hines as Joe Hamilton
- Jenifer Lewis as Margueritte Coleman
- Loretta Devine as Beverly
- Justin Pierre Edmund as Jeremiah Biggs
- Lionel Richie as Britsloe
- Paul Bates as Saul Jeffreys
- Lex Monson as Osbert
- Darvel Davis Jr. as Hakim
- William James Stiggers Jr. as Billy Eldridge
- Marcella Lowery as Anna Eldridge
- Cissy Houston as Mrs. Havergal
- Aaron A. McConnaughey as Teen
A voiceover by the child Jeremiah (Justin Pierre Edmund) guides the viewer through the film.
Rev. Henry Biggs (Courtney B. Vance) is the pastor of a small struggling African American Baptist church in a poverty-stricken neighborhood of New York City. Membership is declining, Henry is pulled in a hundred directions by his parishioners’ needs, and the church’s finances are in trouble. Henry is under intense pressure from real estate developer Joe Hamilton (Gregory Hines) to sell the church’s property so that Hamilton can build luxury condominiums on the site. Henry has also become neglectful of his wife, Julia (Whitney Houston), and his son, Jeremiah. Julia worries that her marriage is failing. Unsure that he can make a difference in his parishioners’ lives and beginning to lose his faith, Henry prays to God for help, which comes in the form of Dudley (Denzel Washington), a witty and debonair angel. Dudley tells Henry that he is an angel sent by God to help him, but Henry is deeply suspicious of Dudley. Julia, however, is instantly charmed by the handsome and unflappable angel.
With Christmas approaching, Henry’s schedule becomes increasingly burdensome, and Dudley begins to spend most of his time with Julia and Jeremiah. Rev. Biggs’ secretary, Beverly (Loretta Devine), becomes comically defensive and aggressive, believing Dudley is there to take her job. Julia’s wasp-tongued mother, Margueritte (Jenifer Lewis), is also suspicious of Dudley, because she believes the newcomer will break up her daughter’s marriage. Dudley and Julia go ice skating, and then later spend an evening in the jazz club where Julia once performed. After Henry confronts Dudley, Dudley realizes that he is falling in love with Julia. So, Dudley turns his attention to Hamilton and manages to disrupt his schemes to get Henry to sell the church. Henry now realizes that his family is the most important thing in his life, and he resolves to be a better husband and father. At the church’s Christmas pageant, Henry finds his faith in God renewed and ties to his family restored.
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