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With all due r-e-s-p-e-c-t to Aretha Franklin, we have to agree with Halle Berry that she probably isn’t the ideal person to play her in a movie on her life. Given her place in history as one of the greatest voices in music, you can’t have just anyone lip-sync their way through her biopic. At the very least the person should be able to hold a note.

Furthermore, we know that Ms. Franklin was one svelte Diva in her younger days but we’re not sure Halle could really capture the essence of who she was then and now.  If the Queen Of Soul wants to keep it real, here are five women who could do bang up job playing her in a movie.

Queen Latifah

Dana Owens could be a fine Queen Of Soul. With two singing albums of under her belt (The Dana Owens Album and Trav’in Light) there would be no need to artificially enhance her vocals. But even more convincing was her performance as Liz Bailey in Living Outloud. She’d have no problem conveying Franklin’s regal swag.

Jennifer Hudson

The Oscar Award winning singer and actress is the fan favorite to play Aretha Franklin. Her looks, voice and acting prowess make her a fairly obvious choice. And with her new Weight Watchers sculpted frame she has the flexibility to play Franklin at different parts of her career.

Amber Riley

The neophyte from Glee has turned heads with her showstopping performances as Mercedes Jones. Finding someone with both singing and acting chops is key and Riley has both to spare.

Jill Scott

My personal favorite for any feature-length film lead Ms. Scott would put the D in Diva for this role. Her turns in Tyler Perry’s Why Did I Get Married? series and on HBO’s “No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency” prove she’s more than comfortable in front of the camera. And did we mention she could sing?


As one of Franklin’s closest friends Fantasia could bring an element to the role that most of the others on this list couldn’t. Not to mention her voice is probably closest to Aretha’s in power and style. Her stint on Broadway playing Celie in “The Color Purple” means she will need less coaching than most in front of the camera.

Who do you think should play Aretha Franklin in her biopic? Leave a comment with your own choice.


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