Black Twitter called foul as the trailer for the infamous Nina Simone biopic starring Zoe Saldana was released today.
Viola? Whoopi? RT @EW: See Zoe Saldana as Nina Simone in the long-awaited ‘Nina’ trailer: https://t.co/RNQkMBYSbN pic.twitter.com/2soVaAUs5O
— BIG MAMA. (@HUMonTHESE) March 2, 2016
The acting ain't terrible but Zoe looks like Don Cheadle if he was dressed as Shirley Chisholm dressed as Nina Simone for Halloween
— MonsterKing (@CerromeRussell) March 2, 2016
The fault of the Nina Simone fiasco isn't casting but the makeup job. Zoe Saldana has been blue and green before HOW CANT SHE BE DARK BROWN
— Ashley Nicole (@geeksandcleats) March 2, 2016
While a decent actress, Saldana's attempts to darken her caramel hue to resemble Simone failed. The black face backlash could have been avoided if a darker-skinned actress was originally cast. Below are 12 actresses better suited to accurately portray Nina Simone.
1. Viola Davis
The veteran actress has experienced new found fame as Annalise Keating on How to Get Away with Murder, and would have slayed this role.
2. Lorraine Toussaint
Toussaint won raves as Orange is the New Black's villainous Vee and currently stars on Fox's Rosewood, and there is no doubt that she would have brought all the conviction to playing Nina.
3. Mary J. Blige
Originally slated to depict Simone, the Queen of Hip-Hop/Soul had to leave the project due to schedule conflicts. How Sway?!
4. Adepero Oduye
The actress is best known for her powerful role in the Dee Rees' coming-of-age film, Pariah, and it wouldn't have hurt had they considered her for the role, because she's that good.
5. Anika Noni Rose
The Disney princess has conquered both the screen and stage in Dreamgirls and the Broadway production of Caroline or Change. Empress of Jazz is not so far removed from her repertoire.
6. Uzo Aduba
The Orange is the New Black star proved her vocal ability portraying Glenda the Good Witch on NBC's The Wiz Live! Can't you just imagine hearing her sing "My Baby Just Cares For Me"?!
7. Whoopi Goldberg
The Oscar-winning vet hasn't held an Academy-worthy role in a while as she hosts ABC's The View. Simone would have been perfect for the versatile actor.
8. Tika Sumpter
The star of The Haves and the Have Nots will portray First Lady Michelle Obama in the romantic film Southside With You, so she's got the chops to properly identify with the love story of this biopic.
9. Teyonah Parris
The actress turned heads in Dear White People and coveted the lead in Spike Lee's explosive film Chiraq. Casting her would have had a whole generation of moviegoers in the bag.
10. Leslie Jones
The comic stuns weekly on Saturday Night Live and will expand her domain as a member of the all-female Ghostbuster's reboot. She's been the Twitter favorite for who Cynthia Mort should have cast as Nina.
11. Danai Gurira
The Walking Dead's lethal Michonne would have been perfect for the role of the "Feelin' Good" songstress.
12. Rutina Wesley
The gorgeous actress is flexing her southern charm in the anticipated "Queen Sugar" and definitely could have made this biopic so sweet.
Nina arrives in theaters this spring. Whether any viewers follow is to be determined.
READ NEXT: The first trailer for 'Nina' is...
No one is really here for Zoe Saldana playing Nina Simone as evident by the backlash Twitter unleashed at the first poster.
— Tropicana. (@TRXVLA) March 2, 2016
This is exasperating. https://t.co/5A6gKdoozB
— buzzed lightyear (@indiKEV) March 2, 2016
That pic alone solidifies the reason not to watch that trailer https://t.co/ESz6eBmgRC
— Vote Deadpool 2020 (@BrandonWhiteInc) March 2, 2016
Well the trailer is now here, and you can take your first look at Zoe Saldana as the empress of jazz.
Without further ado...
Is it as bad as you expected?
READ NEXT: The promo for the Nina Simone biopic...
No, I'm not going to let Nina Simone go out like this. I hope you won't either. On the heels of our community protesting the lack of inclusion at a predominately-white awards show such as the Oscars, is the release of the trailer for the controversial biopic about Nina Simone. Let's be real. Zoe should have taken the hint when she was first announced as the lead for the film. While the rest of us ranted on social media about how inappropriate a casting this was and who would play the part more accurately (nods to India Arie and Viola Davis), Nina Simone's daughter came out and said that the project was unauthorized and that the estate wasn't even consulted or asked to participate in the making of the film.
I could sit here and blame Hollywood for how it constantly and ridiculously practices the erasure of black folks when documenting history via cinema. Yes, Hollywood is a mess and we all know it. We will continue to call that culture out every time we see it. When are we going to start holding actors and actresses accountable for their culpability in Hollywood's legacy of racism? Gods of Egypt has flopped. Great. I highly doubt that Joseph Fiennes will find success trying to play Michael Jackson. Now it's time to show Zoe and anyone else who would step into a space that isn't befitting for them that not only will we boycott Hollywood for trying to shade (or lighten) our history... we will boycott YOU.
Zoe, how can you call yourself a Nina Simone fan and allow yourself to be essentially put n blackface to portray her? Nina once said, "I've never changed. I've never changed my hair. I've never changed my color, I have always been proud of myself, and my fans are proud of me for remaining the way I've always been." To so fundamentally disregard what the artist you're trying to authentically illuminate stood for disrespects her legacy and disregards her voice. So, Zoe, you can take severals seats, catch infinite shade, and know that I will stand up for Nina Simone. I will hear her voice. I won't ask her to change.
Watch Nina's own words on black beauty below:
What do you think about the Nina trailer? Will you go and see the film?
READ NEXT: Why we wear our crowns: Nina...
The biopic that received an immediate and resounding "no" is gearing up for its promo process. Zoe Saldana stars as Nina Simone -- whose recent documentary, What Happened, Miss Simone? captured audiences on Netflix -- in a film about the singer's relationship with her manager. A trailer has not been released for the biopic, also starring Golden Globe Award nominee David Oyelowo as Simone's manager, Clifton Henderson.
The film has been in production for a few years now, and continues to be met with backlash, primarily for the casting of Saldana, who has clear disparities of resemblance to the late pianist.
In regards to the controversy, Saldana told BET last summer, “An artist is colorless, genderless… It’s more complex than just ‘Oh, you chose the Halle Berry look-alike to play a dark, strikingly beautiful, iconic Black woman.’ The truth is, they chose an artist who was willing to sacrifice herself. We needed to tell her story because she deserves it.”
*Looks at the poster for the Nina Simone biopic that stars Zoe Saldana* pic.twitter.com/kE33G2svJB— Matthew A. Cherry (@MatthewACherry) March 1, 2016
The movie will be released in theaters on April 22.
Will you be seeing Nina when it hits theaters?
READ NEXT: Twitter celebrates the epic flop of "Gods of...