Aretha Franklin was a musical icon that was on top of the world for decades thanks to her incredible vocal talents. And one of the most revered works she ever produced was the album “Amazing Grace,” which was recorded live in a Baptist church in 1972. And while the whole experience was filmed, the footage was never completed and thus, never released. Until now.
And as seen in the new trailer for “Amazing Grace,” the film is fairly straightforward. The documentary is the live recording of one of Franklin’s greatest performances that was thought to be lost to time. Now, with the footage remastered and the audio issues that seemed insurmountable in 1972 now fixed, NEON is releasing the doc to audiences around the world. Even in the brief snippet that we see in the trailer, it’s clear that fans of Franklin (and fans of music, in general) are in for a treat this April.
As alluded to, the film was originally filmed in 1972 by filmmaker Sydney Pollack. However, all that incredible footage sat on the Warner Bros. shelf for decades, as the studio was unable to synchronize the vocals from the album to the footage in the film. Producer Alan Elliott, a friend of Pollack’s bought the rights to the footage from WB, and began the painstaking process of completing the unreleased film.
Now, audiences everywhere will get to experience the power of Franklin’s performance when “Amazing Grace” hits theaters on April 5.
Here’s the short synopsis:
A documentary presenting the live recording of Aretha Franklin’s album Amazing Grace at The New Bethel Baptist Church in Watts, Los Angeles in January 1972.