Jennifer Hudson Recalls How Aretha Franklin Tapped Her For ‘Respect,’ Performs ‘Think’ in New Clip

The Idol alum also explained that she performed the music in the film live because she wanted to channel Franklin’s exact approach and emotions to those songs, even if that meant unlearning and relearning her classics like “Ain’t No Way.” Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios released a minute-long snippet of Hudson performing the icon’s Hot R&B/Hip-Hop Songs No. 1 “Think” in a new clip Tuesday.

“This song goes out to anyone who’s ever felt mistreated,” J. Hud introduced the invigorating performance from the movie with a soft-spoken tone.

“When my existence in this experience right now, whatever I’m feeling in this moment, put it in the character and let it come through the character because in some form it would resonate to what she may have been feeling a lot,” she continued telling Lowe. “So she sang ‘Amazing Grace’ live. Well, we’re going to sing it right here live. Let’s have church. If she was learning ‘Ain’t No Way,’ OK, well, Jennifer has to unlearn the song as what we know it to be today because it’s not Jennifer Hudson the singer. It is the actress who’s portraying Aretha Franklin. And in this scene, she’s learning the song. She don’t know the song yet. It’s forming before your eyes. … So whatever I was feeling, whether it was anxiety, whatever emotion, I allowed it to come through the character or use it for the character.”

Respect comes out in theaters this Friday, Aug. 13.

Watch her Apple Music 1 interview, as well as her “I Think” performance, below.

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