J. Hud will inherit the Queen’s throne. 


Aretha Franklin has long wanted Halle Berry to play her in the movie of her incredible life. But it looks like we’re getting something equally amazing–or perhaps even better, if you ask some.

A few days ago, at Clive Davis’s pre-Grammys party, actress Jennifer Hudson sang some of the Queen of Soul’s classics, including “Respect.”

Davis, a music exec who’s known Aretha for a while, then announced that J. Hud would be playing Aretha in a new movie. (No, there’s no release date yet, or much detail at all, besides the fact that MGM will reportedly acquire and finance the film.)

Above, Aretha Franklin back in the day. (photo via Atlantic Records) 

Aretha’s music career spans more than 60 years and includes over 70 million record sales around the world. The 75-year-old, who was born to a traveling preacher in Memphis but who later made her home in Detroit, is a member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame, the NAACP Hall of Fame, the Gospel music Hall of Fame.

She was even awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2005.

Above, J. Hud (on the right) in ‘Dreamgirls’ in 2006. (Photo via Paramount Studios)

Hudson, who played Effie White in Dreamgirls over a decade ago, is, of course, a singer as well as an actress, and it seems that she’ll be singing the songs in the upcoming Aretha biopic.

Halle Berry, who’s not a singer, would have lip-synced.

The film will be produced by Straight Outta Compton’s Scott Bernstein and music producer Harvey Mason Jr., who was worked with Aretha in the past.