The Daily Grind Video

Zoe Saldana stepped out to check out the magazines on the newsstands amidst growing controversy regarding her role as Nina Simone in an upcoming biopic of the singer’s life. 

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After a photo of the Avatar actress leaked online of Zoe dressed as Nina Simone, wearing an afro wig, dark makeup and a fake nose – outrage quickly grew. 

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A petition surfaced online asking the filmmakers to cast another actress as Nina Simone. 

The Huffington Post reports:

Simone’s daughter, Simone Kelly, disagreed with Saldana’s casting during an interview with the New York Times. “My mother was raised at a time when she was told her nose was too wide, her skin was too dark. Appearance-wise this is not the best choice,” she said.

Professors, scholars and singers all spoke out about Saldana, who is Dominican and Puerto Rican, being cast for this role. In a post on her website, songstress India Arie wrote:

“YES they should have chosen someone who LOOKS like Nina Simone, ESPECIALLY since her RACE played such a PIVOTAL role in WHO, WHAT and WHY, she was. THAT ASIDE for a second, this just looks WEIRD, it looks like a person in Black(er) face with a fake nose … REALLY?!!!!”

Do you think it is more important to get the best actress for the job, or someone who looks the part?