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Halle Berry: “I’m Not Playing Aretha Franklin”

Somebody needs to have a chat with Ms Aretha Franklin… she’s been pushing for Halle Berry to play her in a film based on the Queen of Soul’s life; a few other media outlets have even gone as far as to say that it’s been confirmed that Halle will be starring in the film, per Aretha.

But if you’ve been paying attention to our posts on the matter, you’ll know that absolutely NOTHING has been confirmed. Any discussion about Halle playing Aretha in a movie are almost solely the Queen of Soul’s desires – wishful thinking on her part; and the same could probably be said about Ms Franklin’s claims that Denzel Washington told her that he’s “open to playing” her father, Reverend C. L. Franklin; that Terence Howard had agreed to play Smokey Robinson; Nia Long as her sister Erma Frankin; Blair Underwood as her brother and long-time manager Cecil Franklin.

It’s been a 1-sided conversation, since none of the above actors, nor the representatives has publicly confirmed that they are even in talks to play any of these roles… until now anyway.

Well, it’s not a confirmation in Aretha’s favor. Specifically, last night, during a red carpet interview leading up to the Golden Globe award ceremony, Halle Berry was asked by Ryan Seacrest about her participation in Aretha’s biopic film, and her response?

I can’t sing! If I could carry a tune, I’d consider it. Someone should tell Aretha that I can’t do her justice,” Halle said.

Yes, someone should tell Aretha that!

Athough, not being able to sing shouldn’t necessarily be a hindrance; she could always lip-synch. That’s exactly what she did in Introducing Dorothy Dandridge. A professional vocalist was hired to provide the singing voice for Dandridge, and Halle simply lip-synched over it. Though I don’t think it worked very well in that film (see the video embedded below). And, quite frankly, it may not even be wise to have whomever is chosen to play Aretha actually sing her songs, if authenticity is crucial.

But I think Halle realizes she just isn’t right for the part, and I’m glad she does, because, as I’ve been saying since my initial posting on this a few months ago, as much as I love Ms Berry, she isn’t!

So, let’s see where all this goes from here…

6 comments to Halle Berry: “I’m Not Playing Aretha Franklin”

  • Thank Goodness Halle has enough sense to pass on that. And I still say Jennifer Hudson was born to play The Queen on film, although now she’ll need extra padding.

  • JMac

    Praise the lord! That would have been just as bad as having Janet Jackson play Bessie Smith.

    I don’t know who could ever play Aretha. I can’t even see Jennifer Hudson in that role.

  • This is good news & Im happy that she broke it down like that!

    But maybe she can make a cameo appearance as one of Aretha’s breasts. Lord know they will need a strong support.

  • Maria

    LOL @ tafari!

  • Miko

    Ok, this is a no brainer. Go to any Black Baptist church (preferably in Detroit) and find a couple of singers who resemble Aretha, -that won’t be hard; then teach them to act like Aretha. They need to be die-hard fans. They will be an unknowns but they will have a ‘feel’ and history of Aretha’s past/present.

  • Geneva Girl

    What about Fantasia? She has the extra weight now and could do the singing. Can she pull it off on film? It could be a real turn around for her career.