NEW YORK – MARCH 28: The Late Show with Stephen Colbert and guest Mary J. Blige during Tuesday’s March 28 2023 show. (Photo by Scott Kowalchyk/CBS via Getty Images)
*Mary J. Blige appeared on the “Late Show With Stephen Colbert,” recently and expressed her desire to star in a Nina Simone biopic.
“I always wanted to play Nina Simone,” said the New York native.
“I want to learn how to play the piano,” she continued. “I love her songs. They are very dark and moody and I can always find a place for that. So yeah, I definitely want to play her.”
Blige was reportedly set to play Simone in 2006 but the project was allegedly shelved due to budget cuts and delays, according to Rated RnB. Zoe Saldana ultimately starred in the 2016 film “Nina.” The actress later expressed regret for taking the role.
Mary J. Blige in “Power Book II: Ghost” (Credit: Starz)
In related news, Blige is producing two new Lifetime original movies inspired by her biggest hits.
According to a news release, “Mary J. Blige’s Real Love” and “Mary J. Blige’s Strength of a Woman” will premiere back-to-back in June. The movies are headlined by Ajiona Alexus (Empire,13 Reasons Why) and Da’Vinchi (BMF, All American) with Princess Davis, Austin Anozie, Millan Tesfazgi, Shiraine Haas, Garfield Wilson and Hamza Fouad rounding out the cast.
Both films, per the synopsis, explore “the highs and lows of young Black love.” The films will premiere on Lifetime on June 10 at 8p/7c.
During her conversation with Colbert, Blige spoke about the 50th anniversary of Hip-Hop.
“I think it’s been amazing because Hip Hop has given our culture a voice,” Blige said. “It’s given everybody a voice and a place to speak their truth to. From JAY-Z to Nas to Biggie, they’re all speaking their truth through music, from Rakim to KRS-One.”
“Everybody is speaking what they’ve lived and what they’ve done through their music and it’s given them some sort of therapy, and that’s what Hip Hop has done and I hope it continues to do that and I hope it stays around for a long time because the new generations are doing the exact same thing.”
Watch the conversation below.
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