The Whitney Houston-centered flick premieres in theaters on Dec. 23.
Directed by Harriet director Kasi Lemmons and written by Bohemian Rhapsody's Anthony McCarten, I Wanna Dance With Somebody promises a "no-holds-barred" portrait of the complex and multifaceted woman behind The Voice. Ackie tackles Houston's turbulent rise to fame, starting from her early childhood as a New Jersey choir girl to becoming one of the best-selling and most-awarded recording artists of all time.
The new trailer gives a closer look at Ackie's depiction of Houston as she strives to counter the public's initial criticism that her music "wasn't Black enough."
"That's just bull and it makes me angry, actually. It's hateful and uninformed," Ackie's Houston says in the trailer. "My whole life, she ain't Black enough, she's ain't White enough. Well, how about she's not obedient enough? How about she ain't fearful enough? Music is not a color to me, it has no boundaries. I sing what I want to sing, be how I want to be and reach as big an audience as I can."
The film takes audiences on an emotional journey through Houston's trailblazing life and career, the betrayals she faced and the love she treasured. It also features a star-studded cast, including Tamara Tunie as Cissy Houston, Ashton Sanders as Bobby Brown, Nafessa Williams as Robyn Crawford, Clarke Peters as John Houston, Stanley Tucci as record exec Clive Davis and more.
Ackie spoke with ET about playing Houston last May, just after her casting was announced, and she made a point to assure fans everywhere that she was "doing the work" to prepare for the massive role.
"I’m going to try my best because that woman -- it sends shivers down my spine how much she means to me, the world, Black women, African American women," she said at the time. "I’m going to throw my everything into making sure she is represented properly.”
“I just want to tell her story. And I think when I’m able to simplify it down to that, I’ll be able to handle the pressure,” Ackie added.
I Wanna Dance With Somebody is set to release exclusively in movie theaters on Dec. 23.