Aaliyah was a rising star in her teens; by the time she turned 21, she had broken into Hollywood and dominated music charts with her infectious beats. Her tragic death in a plane crash at the age of 22 left fans heartbroken around the world and led to a lengthy lawsuit after it was determined that the pilot of the plane had cocaine and alcohol in his system, and since 2001 those who loved the young star have tried to cope with the loss of such a creative talent. Now, a Lifetime movie looks to bring her story to the small screen to help do just that.
The movie has not been without problems, however; in June it was announced that actress Zendaya Coleman was leaving the project due to criticism from the star’s family. Earlier this month, producers announced Coleman had been replaced by Nickelodeon star Alexandra Shipp, best known for roles in Alvin And The Chipmunks: The Squeakuel and House Of Anubis.
Talk show host Wendy Williams will be one of the producers of the movie and tweeted about the change in cast recently:
— Wendy Williams (@WendyWilliams) July 18, 2014
Coleman spoke out recently on why she dropped out of filming, saying it wasn’t because of the criticism she received but because she didn’t feel the production was where it should have been.
“The reason why I chose not to do the Aaliyah movie had nothing to do with the haters or people telling me I couldn’t do it, I wasn’t talented enough or I wasn’t black enough. The production value wasn’t there. And I tried my best to reach out to the family on my own and I wrote a letter, but I was unable to do so. Therefore I felt not really morally okay with moving forward with the project,” she said.
There is currently no premiere date for the movie, but it is set to air this year.
Image via YouTube