Keke Palmer has opened up about the backlash she is receiving over her casting as Rozonda “Chilli” Thomas in VH1’s upcoming biopic about ’90s R&B girl group, TLC.
Many TLC fans were upset that Palmer was chosen for the role, saying that she doesn’t look anything like Chilli. While Palmer already defended herself quite nicely — even going so far as to say Angela Bassett looked nothing like Tina Turner in What’s Love Got To Do With It, but still turned in an excellent performance — she explained her thoughts about the criticism even further.
“So I always have to let people know, put it in perspective that I got this because of my acting abilitites. It’s about being an actress,” the 19-year-old told EURWeb. “It’s not about looking like this person or like that person. I mean I could understand if I was doing Bette Midler, I mean I don’t look anything like her, but at least I’m the same race as Chili!”
Palmer also went on to say that the biopic, titled Crazy Sexy Cool after the group’s second album, started filming on March 6.
Palmer isn’t the only actress who has received backlash for her casting in a film. Star Trek‘s Zoe Saldana came under fire when she was cast as Nina Simone in the upcoming biopic, Nina. Saldana was blasted for being too “light skinned” to play Simone, and photos of a darkened Saldana wearing a prosthetic nose and afro wig did little to squash the ire of angry fans. Saldana took a diplomatic approach in her response to critics.
“I guess what kept me from being hurt by the negative comments was that I’m doing it for my sistas and my brothas and I don’t care who tells me I’m not this or I’m not that, I know who I am and I know what Nina Simone means to me,” Saldana said.
You can watch Keke Palmer’s interview with EURWeb below.
Do you think Keke Palmer will make a good Rozonda “Chilli” Thomas? Is she right that actors don’t have to look like the person they’re playing in order to do well in the role?