Zoe Saldana's Nina Simone Biopic Set for Release Later This Year

The Nina Simone biopic, starring Zoe Saldana is set to be released by the end of 2015.

In the film Nina, which will be released worldwide by eOne and Universal, Saldana will be joined by Selma actor David Oyelowo, who plays Simone's Paris-based manager Clifton Henderson and Mike Epps who plays Richard Pryor in the film.

When news broke that Saldana was cast to play Ms. Simone in 2012, the actress and filmmakers caught flack online. Critics said she looked nothing like Nina Simone.
In an interview with Monarch Magazine, Saldana responded to criticism saying, “[It] did affect me but I couldn’t let that deter me from doing what I needed to do. Just like everybody else I feel very strongly about Nina Simone, and that [this] was a story that needed to be told.” She added, “Hopefully people will enjoy the film and I helped shed some light on this amazing iconic woman.”

Saldana noted that she went through rigorous training to master the role and even took piano and voice lessons to play Nina Simone.

Alternatively, and with consent from Lisa Simone Kelly, who opposed the making of Nina, Netflix and RadicalMedia paired up to produce and release the documentary, What Happened, Miss Simone?, which will premiere exclusively on Netflix at the end of June.

No trailer for Nina has been released.

Photo: eOne

Deonna Anderson is an Oregon-based visual journalist and editorial assistant at For Harriet. Connect with her @iamDEONNA.