In an interview on Instagram, Zoe Saldana said “I should have never played Nina.”
The “Guardians of the Galaxy” star tearfully apologized in an interview with Steven Canals, according to Yahoo Entertainment.
In 2016, a furor erupted over a trailer showing actress Zoe Saldana portraying singer and activist Nina Simone. Saldana’s skin was darkened and she wore a prosthetic nose.
“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. It’s growing. It’s painful. I thought back then that I had the permission, because I was a Black woman. And I am. But it was Nina Simone.” Saldana said in the interview.
Simone Kelly, Nina Simone’s daughter, wrote in 2012 on the official Nina Simone’s official Facebook page recognizing Saldana’s career, but questioning her role in the movie, according to BBC.
“I love Zoe Saldana, we all love Zoe... From Avatar to Colombiana, I’ve seen those movies a few times. But not every project is for everybody. And I know what my mother would think. I just don’t get it.”
“Nina” was released in 2016 and received unfavorable reviews.
Nina Simone died in 2003 aged 70.