“Again, in April 2003, I acquired to open up for her in Merrillville, Indiana, the place she held a live performance. That was earlier than Dreamgirls earlier than I ever dreamed of taking part in her in the future,” Hudson, 38, tells PEOPLE on this week’s difficulty. “I’ve gotten to pay tribute to her many occasions since then. However, each time is like the first time.”
Hudson did simply that in this previous weekend’s 40th BET Awards ceremony, for which she carried out Franklin’s rendition of Nina Simone’s protest track “Younger, Gifted and Black,” earlier than debuting the trailer for Respect. Through the efficiency, she additionally confirmed off a brand new talent she picked up whereas prepping for her latest function.
“I began piano classes,” she says of simply one of many methods she acquired into character. “Aretha acquired me again in music college. It is nonetheless a course of, however the movie has made me extra keen about studying an instrument and expressing myself musically.”
Now, months after filming, the expertise nonetheless sticks with Hudson. “I nonetheless really feel like she’s in me, I actually do,” she says of Franklin. “I simply hope to satisfy her requests. You suppose you respect Aretha, however when you see the movie, and also you study her story, you possibly can’t assist however have a newfound respect for her.”