The film, also starring David Oyelowo, hits theaters on April 22
The first trailer for Zoe Saldana‘s “Nina” was released just one day after the film’s official release date was announced, and it gives audiences a glimpse into Nina Simone’s troubled life.
In the trailer, Zoe Saldana befriends David Oyelowo‘s Clifton Henderson, who becomes her manager and tries to dissuade the singer from drinking and smoking, and even tries to get her to work out when he realizes fans don’t want to see Simone perform as the woman she has become.
Fans took to Twitter on Tuesday to point out that Saldana looks nothing like Simone, the legendary African-American singer-songwriter and civil rights activist whose struggles to balance music, family and personal political beliefs left her living alone in France, feeling exiled from her native U.S.
In 2012, rumors circulated that Saldana would play Simone, and the response was overwhelmingly negative, with fans saying Saldana is too light-skinned to portray the singer.
In 2014, an image was released in which Saldana’s nose had been altered with a prosthetic. Many took to Twitter to suggest that Saldana’s casting was a form of blackface.
Simone was also the subject of an Oscar-nominated documentary feature this year, “What Happened, Miss Simone?”
“Nina” hits theaters on Apr. 22 and is written and directed by Cynthia Mort.