A tearful Zoe Saldana has admitted that she shouldn't have portrayed Nina Simone in the 2016 biopic Nina. During an Instagram Live interview with Steven Canals, the co-creator and executive producer of the FX series Pose, Zoe apologized, saying, “I should have never played Nina. I should have done everything in my power with the leverage that I had 10 years ago – which was a different leverage but it was leverage nonetheless – I should have tried everything in my power to cast a Black woman to play an exceptionally perfect Black woman. It’s growing. It’s painful. I thought back then that I had the permission because I was a Black woman — and I am. But it was Nina Simone, and Nina had a life and she had a journey that should have been and should be honored to the most specific detail because she was a specifically detailed individual — about her voice, her opinions and her views, her music and her art. And she was so honest. So she deserved better.”

She continued, “But that said, I am sorry. I am so sorry because I love her music. She’s one of our giants. Somebody else should step up. Somebody else should tell her story… I just want her story to be told and I want it to be right because she deserves it. I know better today and I’m never going to do that again. Never. I’m learning.”

Back in March 2016, Zoe was criticized for playing Nina Simne after a poster for the biopic came out and it featured Zoe with darker skin and a wider nose. At the time, she addressed the criticism in Allure, saying, “There’s no one way to be black. I’m black the way I know how to be. You have no idea who I am. I am black. I’m raising black men. Don’t you ever think you can look at me and address me with such disdain.”