Jen­nifer Hud­son to star in Aretha Franklin biopic

The Prince George Citizen - - A&e -

NEW YORK — The long-ges­tat­ing Aretha Franklin biopic Re­spect is go­ing ahead with stage di­rec­tor Liesel Tommy set to di­rect.

MGM an­nounced Thurs­day that Tommy will helm the film, which is to star Jen­nifer Hud­son. The Dream­girls ac­tress was cast as the late Queen of Soul in Jan­uary 2018 af­ter Franklin se­lected her for the role. At the time, Hud­son per­formed a med­ley of Franklin’s songs at Clive Davis’ preGrammy bash.

Cal­lie Khouri, who penned 1991’s Thelma & Louise, will write the script.

Tommy was nom­i­nated for a Tony Award for di­rect­ing the 2016 Broad­way pro­duc­tion of Eclipsed star­ring Lupita Ny­ong’o. She is also set to di­rect a film adap­tion of Trevor Noah’s au­to­bi­og­ra­phy.

Franklin died at the age of 76 in Au­gust from pan­cre­atic can­cer.

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