We're already predicting Oscar buzz.

Mackenzie Dunn
June 29, 2020 10:18 am
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If you loved Jennifer Hudson’s powerful pipes in Dreamgirls, get excited for this winter when you can see her latest scene-stealing role as Aretha Franklin in Respect. If the upcoming movie is anything like the trailer—which debuted Sunday night following Hudson’s performance at the virtually-hosted BET Awards—it’s sure to be an incredible ode to the Queen of Soul.

Respect will chronicle Franklin’s iconic rise to fame, from singing in her father’s church to selling out crowds and becoming one of the most recognizable voices and legendary musicians of all time.

Hudson appears to step into the role like a pro—embodying Franklin’s vivacious spirit and demanding R-E-S-P-E-C-T in the lyrics of her songs and in her real-life interactions. The Respect trailer shows a scene in which a male music exec addresses her as Aretha, to which she Hudson expertly quips, “I’d like for you to call me Ms. Franklin.”

Hudson’s portrayal of Franklin will be supported by a star-studded cast, too. Forest Whitaker, Mary J. Blige, Audra McDonald, Queen Latifah, and more will play supporting roles throughout the film.

And while we can’t wait to hear Hudson sing her heart out, right now the trailer is as good as it will get. The film was originally slated to release in August but was pushed back due to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. It will now have a limited release in the U.S. on Christmas Day, before a full release on January 15th, 2021.

In addition to being an award-winning singer and bona fide diva, Franklin is known for her commitment to equality and activism throughout her life. She fought for Civil Rights and Women’s Rights in the 1960s, 70s, and throughout her career, which will likely be highlighted in the film as well.

Franklin was involved in the movie, which has been in development for years, before her death in August 2018. We can't wait to finally get to see it.