“You have to disturb the peace when you can’t get no peace.”
These are the timely words that ring in the teaser trailer for Respect, a new biopic directed by Liesl Tommy that follows Aretha Franklin’s ascension to fame and her work with the civil rights movement. Hitting theaters this December 25, 2020, Respect is set to feature the one and only Jennifer Hudson as Aretha Franklin.
Opening with a cloudburst of sparks, glitter, and the resounding vocals of J.Hud belting out the lyrics to "Respect," the trailer matches the excitement we’re all feeling about getting to see the story of Franklin’s life on-screen. What’s even more exciting is that the Queen of Soul herself got to hand-select J.Hud to portray her for the movie before her death in 2018.
First paying tribute to Franklin in April 2003 when she opened for her in Merrillville, Indiana (before her Oscar-winning performance in Dreamgirls), J.Hud has had many opportunities to honor the powerhouse singer since then. One of them includes her recent appearance at the 20th BET Awards ceremony this June, where she performed Franklin’s rendition of “Young, Gifted and Black,” a protest song by Nina Simone – and debuted her new talent that she developed for her role in Respect.
“I started piano lessons,” she says in an article with People, “Aretha got me back in music school. It's still a process, but the film has made me more passionate about learning an instrument and expressing myself musically."
We’re passionate, too – especially after getting to see not only a sneak peek of J.Hud’s electrifying portrayal of Franklin, but the numerous big-names that appear in cast list: Mary J. Blige, Marlon Wayans, Audra Macdonald, to name a few. Check it out here:
Header image via Youtube
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Riley Mayes is a student at Smith College where she is pursuing her BA in English. She currently lives in Brunswick, Maine, where she loves to go hiking, take care of her plants, and read the heaps of books on her bedside table. New to the twitter game https://twitter.com/RileyMayes3