By now, many of us had already known that Jennifer Hudson would be portraying the legendary Aretha Franklin in the upcoming biopic “Respect.” New cast members for the film have just been announced, and this film will definitely be star-studded.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, Mary J.Blige, Marlon Wayans, Forest Whitaker, and Audra McDonald have been announced as some of the stars that have been added to the cast. According to the film’s synopsis, the film will follow “the Queen of Soul’s rise to fame in the 1960s and 1970s and chronicles her abusive marriage.”

Forest Whitaker is set to play Aretha’s father, “a Baptist minister and popular preacher who was unfaithful to his wife.” While Marlon Wayans is set to portray Ted White, “Aretha’s first husband, whom she married when she was 19 and who was abusive.”

Audra McDonald will play Aretha’s mother, and Mary J. Blige will portray songstress Dinah Washington.

Liesl Tommy, who is directing the film said, “I am thrilled with the incredibly talented cast we have assembled for our film, and I’m so proud that Ms. Franklin entrusted us to tell her story and to share it with the world. As a storyteller, hers is the kind of story we all dream of telling. Her music has inspired me since I was a little girl, and the milestones of her life and career have shown us all how to strive and thrive. To have this powerhouse group of actors — and the phenomenal talent of Jennifer Hudson in this iconic role — means we have the chance of making this film as transcendent as her glorious life and legacy.”

Other stars added to the cast include Saycon Sengbloh, Hailey Kilgore, Marc Maron, Tate Donavan, Tituss Burgess, and newcomer Skye Dakota Turner.


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TSR STAFF: Jade Ashley @Jade_Ashley94