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‘I Wanna Dance With Any person’ Director on Why She “Fought” to Embody Biopic’s “Sweetest Kiss”


Kasi Lemmons stated she “fought” for the inclusion of Whitney Houston’s early relationship with childhood pal and former artistic director Robyn Crawford to be featured within the late singer’s biopic I Wanna Dance With Any person.

Whether or not the movie — produced with the backing of Houston’s household and property in addition to music producer Clive Davis — would characteristic the romance between the duo was a topic of near-continuous hypothesis main as much as its launch. Throughout its premiere, Davis confirmed to The Hollywood Reporter that it could “inform you about her sexuality,” later sharing with Further that the film would set the document straight and depict that “they did have a teenage, one-year affair.”

“There have been so many articles which have … tried to hint her dependancy to being a pissed off lesbian or by no means dated a person earlier than Bobby, all of which was completely inaccurate,” he added.

It was a relationship I Wanna Dance With Any person director Lemmons just lately instructed the Los Angeles Instances — in an interview that additionally options stars Naomi Ackie and Nafessa Williams — she needed to sensitively navigate whereas working with the property. That meant she didn’t attain out to Crawford immediately and as a substitute relied on accounts from those that knew each girls, in addition to Crawford’s A Tune for You: My Life With Whitney Houston, to depict the “profound and vital” connection.

“I wished to, however I didn’t,” Lemmons stated, telling the outlet she knew Crawford had a troublesome relationship with the property. “As a result of I used to be working with the property, I used to be cautious. Individuals’s emotions needed to be thought-about.”

In her 2019 memoir, Crawford confirmed her relationship with Houston, writing that regardless of them desirous to be collectively, “She stated we shouldn’t be bodily anymore, as a result of it could make our journey much more troublesome.”

It was a relationship that goes past the framing of a romance, exploring the duo’s teen friendship and eventual skilled work in its depiction. It was one thing the Houston property had already agreed to incorporate previous to Lemmons’ becoming a member of the venture, initially helmed by govt producer Stella Meghie, who departed because the director.

However Lemmons says the kiss itself that takes place between the 2 required additional negotiation. “I stated, ‘Nicely, presumably they kissed. We actually can surmise that there was a romance there,’” she defined. “I feel everyone knows that at one level it was past simply friendship.”

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