Buzzy Wuzzy: Mary J. Blige To Step In Nina Simone's Shoes For Bio-Pic, Skeptic I Am

Friday, May 14, 2010

You've heard the news by now. As after much speculation and rumors, it is now confirmed that Mary J. Blige is going to step in the shoes of Nina Simone in a bio-pic feature film. The film, which script was written by Cynthia Mort (The Brave One), is to be entitled, simply Nina, and focus on the Jazz legend's life on stage, and her relationship with her manager husband, as well as her civil rights advocacy. 

While it will be a neat feat to see Simone's life come to focus on the screen for fans and those who want to educate themselves more, I'm a bit skeptic.

 Not to dismantle the Queen of Soul, as I am a fan and Mary does resemble the Jazz legend somewhat, but from viewing Miss Blige on a few TV appearances  (The Jamie Foxx Show, Ghost Whisperer) and her music videos, I'm on the fence on if Mary can really rile up the acting, because she didn't prove it too me in those ventures. Sure TV appearances aren't the greatest predictors of talent, and maybe Mary has brushed up on her skills, but still, there has been the conversation that we're putting actors out of work, whenever a role such as this pops up.

Not to say that singers can't hold their girth (see Jamie Foxx transform into Ray Charles, in 2004's Ray), but whenever I see Diana Ross as Billie Holiday in Lady Sings The Blues, and Beyonce as Etta James in Cadillac Records, I can't help but think that someone else may have been better suited to portray those women of song. Sure, it's all about the music whenever you deal with a music bio-pic and a singer would seem more fitting, but even some actors who've never sang actually pull it off (see Joaquin Phoenix and Reese  Witherspoon as Johnny Cash and June Carter in Walk The Line). But as someone who hasn't really proved their weight at acting, just makes me a bit skeptic of the whole deal. Maybe Mary will prove us wrong and 'put a spell' on us, but sometimes having a current singer playing a legendary singer doesn't always make for a rich depiction. What do you think?

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