Whitney Houston starred in only five movies, including one released just after her death. But the impact she made with her film career was almost as great as her influence as a musical icon.
She proved to fans and skeptics alike that she was more than just a pretty face with an angelic voice – she could really act!
While she was never nominated for an Academy Award for her work on big-screen projects, she did receive an Emmy nomination for her role as the Fairy Godmother in the made-for-TV version of Cinderella.
Check out the five films Houston starred in before her death in the gallery below.
1992 — The Bodyguard
In his touching tribute at Houston's funeral, Bodyguard co-star Kevin Costner said, "Whitney was nervous and scared that she wasn't good enough for the role" but she was "the only person who could have played Rachel Marron."
Indeed, her portrayal of a pop star pursued by a stalker was riveting, as was her sizzling chemistry with Costner. The movie also produced the biggest single of Houston's career, "I Will Always Love You."
1995 — Waiting to Exhale
It was the chick flick of the year, as Houston joined an ensemble cast to portray a successful television producer who deludes herself into thinking that her married lover will leave his wife. The film, directed by Forest Whitaker, focused on the lives and relationships of four African-American women. The film co-starred Loretta Devine, Lela Rochon and Angela Bassett.
1996 — The Preacher's Wife
Teamed with A-list actor Denzel Washington, Houston won an Image Award for Best Actress, recreating the role played by Loretta Young in the 1947 romantic fantasy The Bishop's Wife. The film's soundtrack is the best-selling gospel album of all time.
1997 — Cinderella
Houston played a fabulous, feisty version of the Fairy Godmother in this TV adaptation of the classic fairy tale written for the small screen by Rodgers and Hammerstein. The production, which featured singer Brandy in the title role, was heralded for the ethnic diversity of the cast.
2012 — Sparkle
Released seven months after her death, Sparkle, inspired by the story of The Supremes, was supposed to herald Houston's comeback. Houston was convincing as the overprotective mother of American Idol winner Jordin Sparks, who forms a musical trio with her sisters (Carmen Ejogo and Tika Sumpter). Noted one movie critic, "Houston's performance proves this could have been a first step not merely in a comeback but in a major reinvention." Sadly, it turned out to be her final curtain call.