For weeks now the Internet has been buzzing with attitude and saltiness over Zoe Saldana playing Nina Simone in an upcoming biopic. Those angry tweets and blog posts were exasperated when images of Saldana in costume—and full makeup—surfaced.
Several days ago India Arie posted an intense blog on NinaSimone.com calling images of Saldana's portrayal a "parody." "This just looks weird, it looks like a person in Black(er) face with a fake nose," wrote Arie. "If they were going to pick a person who looks nothing like Nina Simone… why not her daughter Simone *shrugs* just saying…" But the Grammy winner says the images just make her feel "sad" because "It feels out of place with what Nina Simone means in an African-American historical context."
However, Arie says she's not an actor, but believes Saldana can pull it off if it's her calling. "…I trust that through her obvious admiration of Nina that Zoe Saldana can pull off the portrayal energetically," explained Arie. She gives Saldana the benefit of the doubt that this is her calling. "And maybe Zoe Saldana really is being called spiritually to play this role."
Who's her pick to play Simone? Viola Davis.