Jordin Sparks says Whitney Houston was like a mother to her while filming 'Sparkle'.

The former 'American Idol' winner made her acting debut in the upcoming Motown movie remake alongside the late Whitney Houston, who she says made it easy for her because she was so nurturing and motherly.

The 22-year-old star told RedHook magazine: ''For me, she took on the mother role because my parents weren't there. She was always asking: Did I feel comfortable? Did I need anything?''

Jordin plays struggling singer Sparkle Williams in the 1960s musical drama, whose family begins to fall apart after she finds fame with her sisters in a girl group.

The starlet still can't believe her luck at having had the chance to act opposite her idol and is worried that her film career could have peaked.

Jordin gushed: ''I get so overwhelmed because it's my first film, and for my first film to be so deep and heavy...

''I got to work with one of my idols and sing with her, and she even played my mother. I don't know if anything will ever be as good as this.''

The bubbly singer was a no-brainer to cast, however, according to the film's producer Debra Martin Chase, who recently commented: ''It was always Jordin. She has natural instincts. She is the real deal.''

'Sparkle' is scheduled for release in the autumn.