Aretha Franklin's family has reportedly come out strongly against the upcoming National Geographic miniseries about the famous singer, saying they were shunned from the production process despite asking multiple times to be involved. According to reports, the family is worried that, without those who know her best there to make sure the story is straight, Franklin’s life will be drastically misrepresented and maybe even damaged by false stories about her.
Franklin's granddaughter, Grace, said in a Tik Tok video, "As the immediate family, we feel that it's important to be involved with any biopic of my grandma's life, as it's hard to get any accurate depiction of anyone's life without speaking to the ones closest to them. During the process of writing, directing, and filming this movie, we've reached out to Genius as a family on multiple occasions where we have been disrespected and told we will not be worked with. As the immediate family - emphasis on immediate - we do not support this film and we ask that you also do not support this film, as we feel extremely disrespected, and we feel there will be many inaccuracies about my grandmother's life."
i’d also like to add we don’t have any grievances with the actors/actresses in either of these movies #justiceforthequeen♬ original sound - grace :)
National Geographic said in a statement obtained by BBC News that they had complete permission from Aretha Franklin's estate to make the film. However, the estate and her immediate family are separate due to disputes over the will. National Geographic reportedly said, "We can tell you that everyone who worked on Genius: Aretha approached telling her story with the intention to respect Ms. Franklin in every aspect of the series and in every decision we made."
Franklin's son, Kecalf, voiced skepticism nonetheless, telling Rolling Stone Magazine "What we've found out in the past is that usually when people don't want to work with you, that is a prelude to some type of unprofessional behavior or a prelude to some type of untruth or slander, so we're not quite sure where we're going to see in this series."
Photo courtesy: ©Getty Images/Michael Ochs/Archive/Stringer
John Paluska has been a contributor for Christian Headlines since 2016 and is the founder of The Washington Gazette, a news outlet he relaunched in 2019 as a response to the constant distribution of fake news.