I was 16 years old the day everyone’s two-ways blew up and we learned that Aaliyah died. I was a dancer and knew every single move to every single video she ever released. I cried some real thug tears that day as did just about every other Black girl my age. I’m sure you can imagine my excitement upon hearing about the upcoming biopic.
What I’m not too excited about is all the talk around it. It just seems to be a bunch of fuss. I was happy to learn that Zendaya is playing the role of Aaliyah in the film. Aaliyah was my favorite singer/dancer when I was younger and Zendaya is my daughter’s favorite singer/dancer so the whole idea is pretty neat to me. But all that was drown in a sea of complaints. First it was “But she’s not Black” which was easily silenced with proof that yes, indeed she is. Then it was “She’s not Black enough” which just disgusts me to the core. And mixed in all of that were folks asking “Who is she anyway” making it painfully obvious that they must limit their entertainment to BET and VH1 shows about hoodrats and hoes.
Really, who cares? Zendaya can dance her ass off. And she can sing just as good as Aaliyah who, if you can remember, didn’t really have the best voice in the game to begin with. Aaliyah had a sound to her; a unique style. Really it was her all around swag that made us fall in love with her. Since I am a parent, I’ve been watching Zendaya on Disney for almost 4 years now and she just recently received some kids’ award for most stylish or whatever because she has a little swag of her own. If she were a shade darker and cockeyed, maybe everyone would just shut up about it all. I just want you all to stop slandering the poor girl, especially when its obvious you know nothing about her.
And if that weren’t bad enough, now Aaliyah’s family is complaining. They don’t believe a Lifetime movie will do her justice. They want her to be honored for the “American Icon” that she is. Now, don’t get me wrong, I was personally inspired by the late R & B star. I even idolized her. However, her family comparing her to Ray Charles and Johnny Cash is reeeeeeaaaaaaaaaching. She was great within her own demographics, but my mom probably couldn’t name a single Aaliyah song and neither could my daughter or a few of my white friends from the suburbs. (Sidenote: I’m pretty sure my mom only knows her as the chick who played in the movie with Jet Li and Dr. Burke. lol) We tend to think that EVERYONE values what we find valuable and that’s simply not the case. Aaliyah was beautiful and talented, but her name won’t be written in history books.
All of this is to say, I think everyone who has been whining and complaining needs to take several seats. They haven’t even started filming yet. The least you could do is give them a chance to mess up. And untill then, find yourself a hobby. I hear yoga is fun and they have groupons for that.
P.S. I do hope they show all the business about R. Kelly and maybe,THEN y’all will get that he’s a pedophile and stop playing his music at family reunions.