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Jennifer Hudson is the talk of the interwebs as she transformed into soul legend Aretha Franklin in the new trailer for Franklin’s upcoming biopic, Respect.
The trailer premiered during Sunday night’s BET Awards on Sunday.
The powerful trailer kicks off with Hudson singing Franklin’s iconic song “Respect” before viewers are treated to snippets of her meteoric rise to fame.
The ‘Queen of Soul’ passed away in Detroit on Thursday, August 16, surrounded by family and friends after a lengthy battle with pancreatic cancer. She was 76 at the time of her death.
Before her death, Hudson was handpicked by Franklin to play the role. Clive Davis first announced the news at his 2018 pre-Grammy party. Hudson was invited to the event to sing a couple of songs, and then Davis told the audience that she would star as Franklin in an upcoming biopic about the life of the late Queen of Soul.
Hollywood actor Forest Whitaker, comedian Marlon Wayans, Audra McDonald, Marc Maron, Tituss Burgess, Saycon Sengbloh, Hailey Kilgore, Skye Dakota Turner, Tate Donovan, and Mary J. Blige also star in the movie.
The movie is directed by Liesl Tommy and is produced by Harvey Mason Jr.
“They both sing with a lot of emotion. They both sing with a lot of range and power. It’s really hard to compare anyone with Aretha, though. I think the good thing about Jennifer is that it was Aretha’s pick to play her. … There was a lot of discussion about a lot of people, but Aretha was adamant that it be Jennifer,” Mason Jr. said speaking to USA Today back in 2018.
RESPECT is slated for limited release in the U.S. on Christmas Day, before a full wide release on January 15.