A new biopic about the legendary Whitney Houston has dropped its first official trailer and the internet seems to be divided in its response.
The first trailer for I want to dance with someone a biographical drama about the life and career of the singer and actor, was released on Thursday by Sony Pictures, giving the world its first look at British actor Naomi Ackie’s portrayal of the vocal powerhouse.
The biopic explores Houston’s fame and her debut in the acting world when she co-starred with Kevin Costner in the 1992 romantic drama, the bodyguard, and has been described by Sony Pictures as “a limitless portrait of the complex and multifaceted woman behind The Voice.”
The film also stars Ashton Sanders, Stanley Tucci, Tamara Tunie and Clarke Peters, and is the work of Bohemian Rhapsody screenwriter Anthony McCarten and director Kasi Lemmons.
The film will premiere in theaters on December 21, 2022.
The trailer comes with significantly varying reactions from viewers online as some both welcomed and criticized the excitement of the film. Most early perceptions of the film were positive, praise already pouring in for Ackie, who was given the daunting task of embodying the voice of a generation.
“Now THIS is a Whitney biopic,” said one Twitter user. “The actress TAKES IT.”
“That Whitney Houston biopic looks phenomenal,” another wrote.
“I’M SO EXCITED HERE!!! I love a good biopic and I’ve been waiting for Whitney’s. I’m so glad the Bohemian Rhapsody team is behind this,” someone else tweeted.
Others are hesitant or critical. “This doesn’t look bad, but another Whitney Houston biopic?” said one user.
Several films have been made about Houston’s life and death as the singer battled a drug addiction and died in 2012 at the age of 48 from drowning in a bathtub of a Beverly Hills hotel.
Another Twitter user expressed skepticism about the biopic, proverb“Some people are so special that the essence of it can never be captured in a biopic. Whitney Houston is one of those. Telling her own story.”
“This actually makes me sad,” wrote another. “I do believe Whitney deserved one masterful biopic. A huge one. Like Ray. What’s love got to do with it. Epic. This doesn’t feel like it to me. She deserved more.”
Other fans expressed dislike for the film because of the producers: Pat Houston, the sister-in-law of the singer on behalf of the Houston Estate, and music director Clive Davis, who is played in the film by Tucci.
“Who’s responsible for that Whitney Houston biopic? If Pat Houston is involved, I won’t watch. I’m sorry, but I can’t,” said one user. wrote. “The way she cashed in on Whitney is a disgrace to me.”
The Houston Estate has previously been criticized by fans for launching a Whitney Houston hologram tour in 2019, a venture considered unethical by many.
“Hope no one attends this. The same industry that accelerated and took advantage of Whitney Houston is now trying to take advantage of her still in death. Let her rest, you have no control over her anymore,” a Twitter user wrote at the time.
News week contacted Sony Pictures for comment.