Whitney Houston will live on as a hologram.
Seven years after her death, the late legend’s estate is planning a series of new projects, including a touring hologram, a potential Broadway musical, and an album of unreleased material.
In an interview with The New York Times, Whitney’s sister-in-law and former manager, Pat Houston, revealed why now was the right time. “Everything is about timing for me,” said Houston. “It’s been quite emotional for the past seven years. But now it’s about being strategic.”
The Whitney Houston Estate recently signed a deal with Primary Wave Music Publishing. As part of the agreement, Primary Wave will acquire 50 percent of the estate’s assets, including Houston’s music and film royalties, merchandising, and the right to exploit her name and likeness. The deal reportedly values the estate at $14 million.
Larry Mestel, Primary Wave’s founder, is already in talks with Broadway producers about a “musical and a Vegas-style spectacle,” while unreleased tracks from Whitney’s 1985 debut, Whitney Houston, will likely be included on an upcoming album.
“Whitney was America’s sweetheart, and the idea now is to remind people that that is what her legacy is,” said Mestel.
But the first order of business is a hologram, which is already under development. The Whitney hologram will perform the singer’s hits including “I Wanna Dance With Somebody (Who Loves Me)” and “The Greatest Love of All” backed by her original band and backup singers, including her brother Gary.
“The hologram has taken precedence over everything,” said Pat Houston.
In 2016, a Houston hologram was slated to perform a duet of “I’m Every Woman” with Christina Aguilera during the season finale of “The Voice,” but was scrapped because it “was not ready to air,” according to Houston’s estate.
The estate is looking to revive Houston’s brand. The singer, who died at age 48, had 11 No. 1 hits and released seven albums throughout her illustrious career, including her final project I Look to You in 2009.