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Mahalia Jackson Star Janet Hubert: She’s A Beast! | Watch

“Remember Me: The Mahalia Jackson Story” is a film recalling the events that took place in Mahalia Jackson’s life and career.

The movie has a stellar cast including Janet Hubert, Ledisi, Wendy Raquel Robinson, Keith David, Corbin Bleu, and Columbus Short.

Hubert plays the role of Mahalia’s namesake, Aunt Duke, who she describes as a beast.

“Aunt Duke is the sister of Mahalia’s mother. She is the namesake. Aunt Duke was the person everyone went to for advice. Aunt Duke owned her own home in 1916 when Black women didn’t own their homes. She was the strength and the backbone of the family so everybody relied on Aunt Duke and she was rough. Aunt Duke did not know how to show love because I don’t think she ever had love or she could not be soft and gentle the way Black women can today,” said Hubert.

Remember Me: The Mahalia Jackson Story
Remember Me: The Mahalia Jackson Story (Photo: Ron T. Young)

Hubert shared that while playing Duke, it was difficult being mean to the children on set.

“Being mean to the children was hard,” Hubert said. “As soon as we stopped shooting I would immediately go back into being me. The kids were like, ‘God you’re nothing like her,’ and I said well, ‘thank God, I hope not.'”

Hubert also voiced why it’s important to share Jackson’s story.

Remember Me: The Mahalia Jackson Story
Remember Me: The Mahalia Jackson Story

“Mahalia Jackson was a figure in my time growing up that everyone listened to,” Hubert said. “She was the voice of the ’60s, she was the voice of the ’70s. She was that voice, that when you wanted to have a praise moment where you could see her in your mind closing her eyes and singing “Precious Lord.”

“Remember Me” also documents Jackson being there for Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. throughout his movement which Hubert said “she was that voice all over, marching with Martin.”

“Remember Me: The Mahalia Jackson Story” will make its world premiere at the Pan African Film & Arts Festival on Tuesday, April 19th.


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