Lifetime’s long-awaited Aaliyah biopic will premiere November 15 at 8/7CT, the network announced today. Aaliyah: The Princess of R&B, starring Alexandra Shipp who replaced Disney star Zendaya in the role of the ill-fated songbird and actress, is based on the bestseller Aaliyah: More Than a Woman by former Time Magazine music editor Christopher John Farley.
The film also features Anthony Grant (Love Thy Neighbor) as music impresario Damon Dash, Izaak Smith (Mirror, Mirror) as record producer Timbaland, Elise Neal (The Soul Man) as soul legend Gladys Knight and Chattrisse Dolabaille (Home Away) as Missy Elliot.
Aaliyah: The Princess of R&B follows the multitalented Brooklyn native — who paved the way for superstars like Beyoncé and Rihanna — from her debut on Star Search at age ten to the controversies that surrounded her as she rose to fame to her equally controversial and untimely 2001 death in a Bahamian plane crash at age 22.
Her family filed a wrongful death lawsuit after it was revealed that the plane’s pilot was unlicensed and had been drinking and using cocaine.
Decades after her death Aaliyah is still listed as Billboard’s tenth most famous R&B artist of the past 25 years.
Aaliyah: The Princess of R&B is produced by Aaliyah Productions, Inc. and executive produced by Howard Braunstein (The Client List), Debra Martin Chase (The Princess Diaries) and Wendy Williams (The Wendy Williams Show). Michael Elliot (Carmen: A Hip Hopera) penned the screenplay.
Aaliyah: The Princess of R&B premieres Saturday, November 15 at 8/7CT on Lifetime.
Photos courtesy of Lifetime.