Argument about Aretha Franklin film casting ends in shooting: witnesses

Michael Hatton, 44, allegedly shot 47-year-old Tony Lundy on a discussion about which actress should play, shows singer Aretha Franklin in a movie, witnesses said.

(Suffolk Police)

A clear argument about which actress would play, shows singer Aretha Franklin in a film is ended in a shooting outside a Virginia barbershop Thursday, witnesses said.

Witnesses told WTKR-TV that Michael Hatton, 44, was the fight with the 47-year-old Tony Lundy on the question of whether actress Halle Berry should play the “Queen of Soul” who died Thursday in a biographical film.

The verbal disagreement turned physical and Hatton drew a firearm and shot Lundy is at least a times, Suffolk Police said. Witnesses told WVEC-TV the two men struggled and beat on the floor for Hatton used his gun.


“The way [Hatton’s] arm was elevated, I was in the assumption that he shot over his head, but as I walked there I saw Tony bleed, and then I saw him fall down on the ground and I said, ‘Oh man, he is dead,’ ” witness Harvey Clark told the station.

Instead, Lundy was admitted to the hospital in critical condition; Hatton, was treated for injuries at a hospital before they come to the Western Tidewater Regional Jail, where he was being held without bond, police said.

Hatton was arrested and faces multiple charges, including: aggravated malicious wounding; shoot, cutting, stabbing, or wound in the commission of a crime; – the use of a firearm in the commission of a felony; and discharging a firearm in public with injuries, police said.


The police said that they were not able to substantiate any claims of witnesses to the local media as the investigation is ongoing.

Entertainment Weekly reported in 2011 that Aretha Franklin wanted Halle Berry to play her in a potential movie based on her life. However, Billboard reported earlier this year that Franklin was the preferred Jennifer Hudson for the role.

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