Earlier this week, fans expressed their disappointment that 17-year-old Disney actress Zendaya Coleman was chosen to portray Aaliyah in the Lifetime Television movie Aaliyah: Princess of R&B. Now, the late singer’s family is speaking up about the unauthorized biopic.
The family used Aaliyah’s official Twitter account to reveal that they are not currently involved in project, which is based on the Christopher Farley book Aaliyah: More than a Woman.
“Fans we hear your comments and concerns !! unfortunately we cannot confirm the family is behind the project at this time,” they wrote.
The family also requested that fans be respectful to Coleman as she prepares for the role. “However, we do ask that you are respectful to the artist playing the role, for they may not fully have or know the details about this role And her family’s involvement #teamaaliyah.”
Meanwhile, Coleman has expressed her intention to honor Aaliyah, who passed away at the age of 22 on August 25, 2001 in a plane crash.
“She’s been an inspiration and influence in my whole career, her talent still shines brighter then ever, all I wanna do is honor her,” Coleman tweeted. “Show how much she accomplished in only 22 years….she’s beautiful inside and there will never be another Aaliyah, I just hope to share her beautiful story, and make her proud up in heaven #babygirl#forever#OneInAMillion.”
As for her critics, Coleman added, “I’m just a 17 year old girl who got cast to play one of her biggest inspirations #positive.”
Aaliyah: Princess of R&B will be filmed in the summer and debut in the fall on Lifetime.
Copyright 2014 ABC News Radio