Robin Roberts Didn't See the "Brilliant" Danielle Brooks In Mahalia Jackson Movie at First

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Robin Roberts knows she's been a part of a lot of amazing projects throughout her career. But to her, her latest project, "Robin Roberts Presents: Mahalia," a movie about the life of "Queen of Gospel" and civil rights activist Mahalia Jackson, is particularly special.

And that's in no small part thanks to the actress playing the woman who actually prompted Martin Luther King, Jr. to give his "I Have a Dream" speech on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial — the one and only Danielle Brooks.

But even Robin admits, she didn't see it at first!

"[For years], we had the script in place — working on it, tweaking it," says Robin, "but in the back of my mind, I'm thinking, 'Who's going to play Mahalia Jackson?'"

As soon as director Kenny Leon came on board, though, he had the answer: Danielle.

But Robin wasn't so convinced: "Taystee? Taystee from 'Orange Is the New Black'?!"

While the "Good Morning America" anchor might not have been quite sold at first, Danielle quickly blew her away. "This is why it took from 2018 to 2021 [to make this movie]," Robin tells Rach. "It was worth the wait [for Danielle]," says Robin, who says the actress played the role "brilliantly."

Watch a clip from the film above!

“Robin Roberts Presents: Mahalia" premieres at 8 p.m. on Lifetime tomorrow, Saturday, April 3, which also marks the 53rd anniversary of Martin Luther King, Jr.'s assassination.

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