“I say this to all Whitney’s family, friends and fan base: if you watch this movie, watch it knowing that Lifetime is notorious for making bad biopics of deceased celebrities and brace yourself for the worst,” said Pat Houston, who manages her sister’s estate, in a scathing statement.
During her recent interview with The Root, director Angela Bassett, who was a friend of the “I'm Your Baby Tonight” singer and worked with her on the movie, “Waiting to Exhale,” said that there were no objections from the Houston estate.
“We didn’t receive any pushback from her family,” Bassett said. “We tried to be neutral and fair when they made the decision not to be involved in the film.”
Apparently, Bassett didn’t get the memo. Pat and the rest of the Houston family are not happy about the Basset and the film, and claim that she is “assaulting the legacy” of Whitney.
"It is easy to turn a blind eye to other people if you're not careful," Pat Houston continued. "But the needs of Whitney's family matter. We have dealt with her every emotion from the day she was born until the day she died, which gives us absolute position and absolute authority as a family to feel the way we do about her legacy. We matter. We're still here. Why wasn't there a call to myself, Gary, Cissy or even her daughter?
"Why deny selected members of the family an advanced copy of the film? As we once again enter a season of bereavement and the strategic timing so close to the anniversary of Whitney's death, this is a disappointment that any of us who loved her could do without. This creative pursuit at the expense of the integrity of such an iconic woman, who is voiceless today, reeks of condemnation and deceit. It reeks of enslavement to an industry that will likely do the same to you one day. As my grandmother used to say, 'Keep living.'"
As for the “friendship” angle Bassett’s hanging her hat on in defending the movie, which stars Arlen Escarpeta (“Final Destination 5”) as Bobby Brown and Yaya DaCosta (“The Butler”) as Whitney, Pat isn’t buying it.
"You should not be surprised that someone decided to do a made for TV biopic," Houston said. "And, I might add, without the family's blessing and despite her mother's request to not do this movie. It happens every day. But misrepresenting the term friendship to advance an agenda is not only disrespectful and dishonest but a slap in the face to her true and loyal friends. Truth is violated by silence just as much as by a lie."
What do you think about the movie? Are you looking forward to watching it or are you going to boycott? Let us know in the comments.