Beyonce To Portray Legendary Blues Singer Etta James In ‘Cadillac Records’

Film about influential record label also features Adrien Brody, Cedric the Entertainer, Jeffrey Wright.

Beyoncé is bound for the big screen once again.

The “Irreplaceable” singer will star as legendary blues singer Etta James in Darnell Martin’s “Cadillac Records,” according to The Hollywood Reporter. She will also serve as one of the movie’s executive producers.

“Cadillac Records” will follow the life of influential Chicago-based record-company executive Leonard Chess — who ran the legendary record company with his brother, Phil, through the 1950s and ’60s — and the label’s lineup of musical icons, including James, Muddy Waters (Jeffrey Wright), Willie Dixon (Cedric the Entertainer) and Little Walter (Columbus Short). Oscar winner Adrien Brody is scheduled to play Chess.

The role is the first for Beyoncé since her turn as
Deena Jones in the musical “Dreamgirls.” As Jones, the singer earned two Golden Globe nominations, for Best Actress in a Motion Picture and Best Original Song.

While her “Dreamgirls” character was loosely based on Diana Ross, Beyoncé will have some big shoes to fill as the real-life James. The gutsy and full-figured legend belted out many standout blues and jazz tracks, including “At Last,” which she was inducted into the Grammy Hall of Fame for in 1999.

James has long been a revered figure among female singers. Christina Aguilera has called James her idol and doted on her in interviews. In 2006, as part of InStyle magazine’s pairing of singers and their musical mentors,
James and Aguilera met and were photographed together .

“Etta is my all-time favorite singer,” Aguilera told MTV News at the time. “I’ve said it for the last seven years — since I had my first debut record out — in every interview, in every story, in every on- and off-camera question. I mean, all of Etta’s old songs, countless songs I could name, I grew up listening to. That music was always such a huge escape for me, even from a young age.”

As of press time, no release date had been scheduled for the film.