We know that Jennifer Hudson was handpicked by Aretha Franklin to portray her in the biopic we know now as Respect, but bet you didn't know this manifestation was 15 years in-the-making?
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The GRAMMY and Oscar-winning artist spoke exclusively with Audacy's own Big Tigger and crew of The Big Tigger Morning Show to discuss Respect, takeaways, American Idol, what she would need to reprise her Sex and the City role, a potential VERZUZ showdown and who she'd like to see portray her in a biopic someday. Spoiler alert: find out why it could be Megan Thee Stallion.
"The time has finally come. I'm excited for the world to see it. I've waited for this for 15 years," she began. On meeting Aretha Franklin and now, portraying her in a film, Hudson is still on cloud 9, but it's also "a lot."
"It's already amazing when you get to meet somebody you idolize, that you look up to, right? That's enough. Then add that on top of it, her saying like 'I want you to play me.' Not to mention, it was my dream to play her. Add all of that up, it's beyond surreal. It's exciting, but it kinda makes me that more nervous because it makes it that more personal when it comes from the actual person and you know them," she explained.
As far as preparation goes, Hudson focused on the "era she grew up in." She explained, "knowing what it was like to be a woman during at that time. To understand how she existed, what the circumstances were in contrast to how I grew up— which were extremely different. Which played a huge role in the portrayal of her."
Because of the grandeur associated with Aretha Franklin, Hudson wants the audience to understand how human she was. "We know her as the icon, the legend and we will also celebrate that, but there was also a human—with a life— and we al