Whitney Houston biopic will star The Rise of Skywalker’s Naomi Ackie

Last Updated on August 2, 2021

Naomi Ackie, Whitney Houston, biopic

After being featured as Jannah in Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, THR has reported that Naomi Ackie will play Whitney Houston in I Wanna Dance With Somebody, a biopic about the life of the iconic singer.

The biopic will be directed by Stella Meghie (The Photograph) from a screenplay by Anthony McCarten (Bohemian Rhapsody). "We spent the better part of the last year in an exhaustive search for an actress who could embody Whitney Houston," said Meghie. "Naomi Ackie impressed us at every stage of the process. I was moved by her ability to capture the stage presence of a global icon while bringing humanity to her interior life." I Wanna Dance With Somebody is already slated for a Thanksgiving 2022 release. Over the course of her career, Whitney Houston became the most awarded female artist of all-time and sold over 200 million records worldwide before her untimely death at the age of 48 in 2012. Pat Houston, Whitney's long-time manager and sister-in-law, will produce on behalf of Houston's esate, along with music producer Clive Davis, which means that the film will get to make use of Whitney Houston's catalog, including her vocals. In a statement, Clive Davis said:

Naomi Ackie’s screen test was so powerful, it sent shivers up my spine. Although Whitney’s incomparable vocals are used for all the songs, Naomi's extraordinary acting range enables her to masterfully capture Whitney’s unique charm, star power, and, of course, her personal struggles. Naomi is the real deal and I can’t imagine a better choice for this iconic role.

Pat Houston added, "All Whitney fans have an appetite for perfection when it comes to Whitney and her legacy. To transform someone into a matchless icon is virtually impossible but with careful consideration, Naomi Ackie was selected based on her quality performances and her deep commitment to emerging into the woman that we all loved. We look forward to taking this journey with her." Naomi Ackie also starred in The End of the F***ing World on Netflix and is also starring alongside Johnny Flynn and Will Poulter in The Score, a musical heist movie.

Source: THR

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Based in Canada, Kevin Fraser has been a news editor with JoBlo since 2015. When not writing for the site, you can find him indulging in his passion for baking and adding to his increasingly large collection of movies that he can never find the time to watch.