Knowles will play Etta James in the Sony BMG Films production, which was penned by Darnell Martin. The film, according to the trade paper, concerns the "Chicago record company Chess Records; its founder, Leonard Chess; and the turbulent lives of some of the label's legends, who included Muddy Waters, Little Walter, Howlin' Wolf and Chuck Berry." Also scheduled to star are Adrien Brody (as Leonard Chess), Jeffrey Wright (as Muddy Waters), Cedric the Entertainer (as Willie Dixon), Columbus Short (as Little Walter), Emmanuelle Chriqui and Tammy Blanchard.
Steve Jordan is producing the music for the film, which will feature four songs recorded by Knowles. Music World Entertainment and Columbia Records will release the film's soundtrack.
Andrew Lack and Sofia Sondervan are the film's producers.