Nina Simone is still too black for Hollywood. (From Black Acrylic)
The above video is Nina speaking in her own words.
I am boycotting Cynthia Mort and Jimmy Iovine’s Nina Simone biopic featuring Zoe Saldana. I have too much respect for Nina Simone’s legacy to pay money to see her life played out in blackface – a caricature of the dark skin and African features she was proud of. Nina Simone dedicated her life to rebelling against White supremacy and racism through her music and activism. Her music is part of an African-American Black Arts Movement of politically inspired resistance. Songs such as “Four Women”, “Mississippi Goddamn,” and “Young, Gifted and Black” spoke to a generation fighting for freedom and social justice. Nina Simone’s unapologetic defense of blackness was personified by her looks – dark skinned, natural haired and defiant in her self-love. Her aesthetics were as political as some of her compositions. I mean, Black is beautiful but not that Black…right? I say this sarcastically, but it is how many people – regardless of their race – feel. It is clear that Nina Simone has failed Hollywood’s brown paper bag test and if her blackness could not be mitigated by the celebrity of Mary J Blige (who was originally cast for the role), the filmmakers feel Saldana would bleach Simone into a more socially acceptable heroine. Sadly, the casting of Saldana is an anticlimax – more tap water than the necessary cognac. Click here for the full article.