After months of anticipation, Lifetime gave its viewers a first look at the network's upcoming Whitney Houston biopic simply titled “Whitney.” The trailer covers the late artist’s career and tumultuous relationship with Bobby Brown.
The biopic stars one-time “America’s Next Top Model" Cycle 3 contestant Yaya DaCosta and is directed by Angela Bassett, who worked with Houston on the 1995 film “Waiting to Exhale.“ This is Bassett’s directorial debut.
If the trailer is any indication, the film will focus on the rise and fall of Houston’s relationship with her singer/songwriter/rapper/dancer husband, Brown. It will also explore the darker side of her life, including her drug use and family conflict. However, Houston fans can also expect the Lifetime original to feature some of the artist’s biggest hits. The trailer alone features snippets of her singles “I’m Every Woman” and “I Will Always Love You.”
With so much of Houston’s dirty laundry being exposed in the film, many of her devout fans might be wondering how those who survived her feel about the project. This is especially true for Brown, 45, who comes off looking the worst in the sneak peek.
In an interview with Entertainment Weekly in June, Bassett discussed this very issue.
“Bobby is not involved in the film,” she said. “Of course, we’re very sensitive to whatever the relationships might be or what we have heard or what we perceive his relationship between her family and him. So we’re trying to be respectful.”
As for Houston’s family, Bassett said that, while they’re not involved, she did reach out to them in the early days of production to pay her respects and get their “OK” to do the film.
“Whitney” premieres Jan. 17 at 8 p.m. on Lifetime.