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  • Whitney Houston’s sudden death was shocking, but what a story. Not surprisingly, a biopic is already being talked about and a number of top stars are being mentioned for the role. But here’s who’s likely to get it.

    Rihanna, who just turned 24, has been reported to be the favorite, and bears some resemblance to the young Whitney. But in reality, her chances are pretty slim.

    If music mogul Clive Davis is helming the project as London’s Daily Mail reported, then you can bet that Rihanna is out. The tip off: she records for rival label Universal Music, Interscope.

    Davis’ label Jive Records is aligned with Sony, and you can bet the part will go to a Sony/Jive artist. That means Jennifer Hudson or Jordan Sparks are the best bet to get the part.

    Both record for Davis’ label and the tie-ins for a soundtrack album and a tour are just too lucrative for Davis to hand those opportunities off to a rival label, unless they work a deal.

    Plus, Rihanna has a natural Barbadian lilt in her speech that would need to be addressed. And there is a real question whether she can duplicate Houston’s high notes. Hudson, on the other hand can get there.

    Rihanna has also had limited acting experience. She’s about to debut in a new movie, “Battleship,” but it’s a bit part at best.

    The former American Idol contestant not only has the pipes to match Whitney’s, but she has far more acting cred. She won an Oscar for best supporting actress in 2006’s “Dream Girls.”

    Hudson’s song from the “Dream Girls” soundtrack album, “Love You I Do,” became her first top 10 hit and was nominated for the 2007 Oscar for Best Original Song. It won a Grammy for Best Song Written for a Motion Picture, Television or Other Visual Media.

    The only other actress that can come close is Brandy Norwood, who starred with Houston in the 1997 adaptation of “Cinderella.”

    But Brandy can’t sing the songs, so why go with her when Hudson already hits all the right notes? If Hudson is unavailable, then Sparks would be the next likely candidate for the role.