Emotional Zoe Saldana 'So Sorry' For Playing Nina Simone In 2016 Biopic
Zoe Saldana has tearfully apologised for playing Nina Simone in 2016 biopic Nina. You can watch her apology here:
Zoe Saldana talking about how she regrets playing Nina Simone on a recent live stream (1/2) pic.twitter.com/FMFzPUyRIG
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The 42-year-old actor - of Dominican and Puerto Rican descent - was controversially cast as the late musician and wore a prosthetic nose and skin-darkening make-up for the role.
At the time, Simone's estate criticised the casting, telling Saldana to 'take Nina's name out your mouth'.
Director Cynthia Mort defended her casting in the film, which has a two percent rating on Rotten Tomatoes, but now Saldana has expressed her deep regret for accepting the part.
Speaking to Pose creator Steven Canals on an Instagram live-stream, she said: "I should have never played Nina. I should have done everything in my power with the leverage that I had 10 years ago - which was a different leverage, but it was leverage nonetheless.
"I should have tried everything in my power to cast a black woman to play an exceptionally perfect black woman.
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"I thought back then that I had the permission [to play her] because I was a black woman. And I am. But it was Nina Simone. And Nina had a life and she had a journey that should have been - and should be - honoured to the most specific detail because she was a specifically detailed individual. About her voice, her views, her music, her opinions and her art. And she was so honest. So she deserved better."
View this post on InstagramZoe Saldana (@zoesaldana) sits down with "Pose" (@poseonfx) creator and executive producer Steven Canals (@stevencanals) to chat about Afro-Latinidad, colorism in the Latinx community, Nina Simone, and more. #AfroLatinx #AfroLatinidad #BESE #ZoeSaldana #StevenCanals #Pose #PoseFX #AfroLatinos #Dominican #PuertoRican
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Wiping away tears, she added: "With that said: I'm sorry. I'm so sorry. I know better today and I'm never going to do that again. She's one of our giants and someone else should step up. Somebody else should tell her story.
"We've been appropriating ourselves with someone like Nina Simone for a very long time, and I just want her story to be told, and I want it to be right because she deserves it.
"And America deserves it. Because the Americans that inhabit today's America deserve her story to be told. I know better today, and I'm never going to do that again. Never. I'm learning. I'm still processing it. I've been processing it for 10 years, and I think it's a conversation that I wanna have."
Featured Image Credit: Instagram/Bese