The biopic of Aretha Franklin starring Jennifer Hudson as the R&B icon has finally found a director.
Liesl Tommy, who earned a Tony Award nomination for best direction of a play ("Eclipsed," written by Danai Gurira) will helm "Respect" for MGM. Variety reports that "Nashville" creator (and Oscar-winning "Thelma & Louise" screenwriter) Callie Khouri is writing the script.
Hudson shared the good news on Instagram, saying, "Wow, it’s really happening and to think over a decade in the making!"
The movie will follow Franklin from her early days singing in father's choir to becoming the world-famous Queen of Soul.
Producer Scott Bernstein ("Straight Outta Compton") and Harvey Mason, Jr., a music producer who has worked with both Hudson and Franklin, will produce.
Tommy has directed episodes of AMC's "The Walking Dead," HBO's "Insecure" and OWN's "Queen Sugar." She is also attached to direct the adaptation of "Daily Show" host Trevor Noah's memoir, "Born a Crime." Like Noah, she's also from South Africa.
Hudson, who won a Best Supporting Actress Oscar in for 2006's "Dreamgirls," is currently a coach on "The Voice UK." She'll next be seen in the big-screen musical "Cats," out December 20.
[Via Variety, THR]