Very interesting. Nina Simone's daughter has finally broken her silence on the proposed biopic based on her mother's life. Simone's daughter has questioned the "love story" angle of the film ... and revealed that the late and iconic singer's former nurse and manager was gay.
Zoe Saldana has been cast as the lead in Nina. David Oyelowo will star as her former manager Clifton Henderson. Simone's daughter Lisa Celeste Stroud commented on the screenplay's plot in a Facebook post, reports Shadow and Act.
When the announcement initially hit the press with MJ Blige cast as Nina (about 6 yrs ago) I heard it along with everyone else. The story was written as a love story between my mother and her former nurse, Clifton Henderson and primarily takes place during the last 8 years of her life. Please note, this project is unauthorized. The Nina Simone Estate was never asked permission nor invited to participate. ...
Clifton Henderson was gay. He was not attracted to women. So, the truth is...Nina Simone and Clifton Henderson NEVER had a relationship other than a business one. Please correct me, but isn't a biopic the story of one's life? ...
For all she endured while here and all of the lives she has touched, she DESERVES to be remembered for who she truly was; not some made up love story from a former nurse/manager (now deceased) who sold his life rights because of his relationship to Nina Simone.
Eunice Kathleen Waymon was born in North Carolina in 1931. She later adopted the stage name "Nina Simone" and rose to international acclaim as a singer-songwriter in the 1950s. Simone later became heavily involved in the civil rights movement in the late 1960s and early 1960s. She died in France in 2003.
Lisa Stroud is the daughter of Andy Stroud, who was the married to Nina Simone from 1961 to 1970. Stroud was also the singer's manager during the turbulent civil rights era.
The daughter also takes a subtle swipe at the decision to cast Zoe Saldana as her mother: "As a child, my mother was told her nose was too big and she was too dark yet she graduated valedictorian of her high school class."
Cynthia Mort wrote the script and has been attached as to the independent feature film. Mary J. Blige was previously attached to lead the project but later "moved on due to funding issues," notes the Hollywood Reporter. "The movie is due to begin production Oct. 16 in Los Angeles."