‘Aaliyah: The Princess of R&B’ producers defend, explain controversial Lifetime biopic

No matter what, celebrity biopics inevitably stir up issues as they try to bring someone’s life to the screen. No one is more aware of that than the producers of “Aaliyah: The Princess of R&B,” the Lifetime movie airing Saturday night about the superstar singer who died in a plane crash when she was 22.

Trouble started brewing this summer when Aaliyah’s family told TMZ and the New York Daily News that they didn’t think Lifetime was the right venue for Aaliyah’s life story — and declined to hand over the music rights. Then, Zendaya Coleman, originally cast to play the star, dropped out of the movie, putting production on hold.
The Movie also struck a negative chord with fans when they revealed it would include some salacious details, including her reported marriage to R. Kelly at age 15.

Were they rattled by all the Twitter-furor over casting and other controversies? Producers admitted that the fury “was hard to ignore, but you can’t dwell on it,” noting that these fans didn’t really know what was going on with production.

“Biopics are hard,” Chase admitted. “People have an opinion and social media allows them to voice that opinion. But at the end of the day, our goal was to make the best movie possible.”