Aretha Franklin has announced that she plans to record a new album. The Queen of Soul was speaking at her 70th birthday party in New York when she revealed the plans. A number of stars were in attendance at the birthday bash, including Diane Sawyer, the Reverend Al Sharpton and her former fiancee Willie Wilkerson.
Detroit Free Press reports that the party took place at the Helmsley Park Lane Hotel, and the septuagenarian sat next to the legendary record producer Clive Davis. Franklin announced that she has re-signed a deal with Clive and intends to record with him once more - they first worked together in the 1980s. Davis also had a close working relationship with Aretha's late god-daughter, Whitney Houston, who referred to Franklin affectionately as 'Aunt Ri.' Franklin was originally supposed to perform at Whitney Houston's funeral in February 2012, but was forced to cancel, as she was suffering from leg spasms and needed to rest, in order to fulfil a live concert commitment that evening. There was some confusion on the day, when Dionne Warwick announced her performance, unaware that Franklin was not in attendance.
Aretha also commented on the delays to her planned biopic, which is currently on hold. She commented "It's in a limbo position, it's just a lot going on." Franklin has previously hinted, in an interview with Billboard, that she would like Halle Berry to play her in the movie, adding that Berry would not be expected to sing and that it would be her own voice used in the movie.