American Idol Fantasia Barrino to Play American Hero Mahalia Jackson

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It hasn't been smooth sailing for "American Idol" Fantasia Barrino.

The season three winner went from belting it out on Broadway in "The Color Purple," to playing herself in a Lifetime made-for-TV movie, to "starring" in a VH-1 reality show… about her struggle to make it in the business... as a single mom.

But it looks like the tides are turning for this songstress.

According to the Hollywood Reporter, Barrino has just landed the lead role in the upcoming Mahalia Jackson biopic.

This feature-film adaptation of the book "Got to Tell It: Mahalia Jackson, Queen of Gospel" will recount the life of the late American gospel singer and civil rights activist, who earned herself a spot in the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Barrino will play Jackson on her journey from abject poverty in New Orleans to her rise as a world-famous gospel singer and early supporter of Martin Luther King, Jr.

Euzhan Palcy will direct, and production is slated to begin this April in Pittsburgh and Chicago for a December release.

Though Barrino admittedly does have some acting experience (playing herself), this role marks a major step forward for the star.

It must be music to her ears.