Amazing Grace, the documentary on Aretha Franklin made by Sydney Pollack during a concert held in a church in 1972, will soon hit the big screen.
On August 16, the music world lost its queen of soul. Aretha Franklin died at the age of 76 after suffering from pancreatic cancer. She left behind a rich heritage, with hits such as the timeless "Respect" and "I Say a Little Prayer", which live on through the documentaries and old recordings which are beginning to surface. Among these is a 1972 concert immortalized by Oscar-winning director, Sydney Pollack.
The movie, which was supposed to accompany the release of the album Amazing Grace, but which hadn't yet emerged due to technical and legal problems, is soon to be screened at the DOC NYC film festival in New York on November 12. Filmed by Pollack in January 1972, the documentary follows Aretha Franklin, accompanied by a gospel choir, as she performs a concert at the New Temple Missionary Baptist Church in Los Angeles.
In a press release accompanying the promotion of the film, Sabrina Owens, the niece of Aretha Franklin who oversees the singer's estate, declared that it portrays "the heart and soul of Aretha Franklin", adding: "This film is authentic and is my aunt at her core. She was a daughter of the church, she loved gospel music, and she always incorporated some form of sacred music in her concerts."