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Yaya DaCosta Alafia Has Been Cast To Play Whitney Houston In Angela Bassett's Directorial Debut

by Tambay A. Obenson
June 7, 2014 12:49 AM
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Yaya Alafia

Shockingly, of the more than 3-dozen replies to my "Cast This" post earlier this week (with regards to the announced Lifetime Original Movie on the early years of the relationship between Whitney Houston and Bobby Brown), only one of you mentioned Yaya DaCosta (although I believe she goes by Yaya Alafia now, since getting married to filmmaker Joshua Bee Alafia in 2012). 

I didn't think of her at the time I wrote that piece, but, now that she has been cast as Whitney Houston, I can actually see her in the part, so we're off to a good start. Keep in mind that the film will be set in the late 1980's to early 1990's, during the first 5 years, following the couple's initial meeting in 1989, through 1994. Whitney was 26 in 1989, and Bobby was just 20 years old. Yaya is 31, but she can certainly play the age range the film requires - Whitney Houston from 26 to 31.

Angela Bassett will make her directorial debut with the Lifetime Original Movie, tentatively titled "Whitney Houston," which will chronicle the headline-making relationship between the iconic singer, actress, producer and model, and singer, songwriter Bobby Brown - from the time they first met at the very height of their celebrity, to their courtship and tumultuous marriage. 

Bassett will direct from a script penned by Shem Bitterman ("Betty & Coretta" - the Lifetime Original Movie that Bassett starred in last year). Larry Sanitsky (who produced "Betty & Coretta") will do the same for "Whitney Houston."

We most recently saw Yaya on the big screen in Lee Daniels’ "The Butler," and in Neil Drumming's indie dramedy "Big Words."

TVLine broke the news of her casting, this evening; although no word yet on the actor who will play Bobby Brown.  

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More: Yaya Alafia, Angela Bassett, TV News

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  • Cattina C. Coleman, MS | July 17, 2014 6:57 PMReply

    I wouldn't have picked a better person and I'm not just saying that because she purchased a large volume of my book "Health Over Wealth". Which she absolutely loved by the way. That is my girl from way back. Why wouldn't anyone go with her. Style, Grace, and Elegance.

    Cattina C. Coleman,MS

  • Lena | June 9, 2014 10:43 AMReply

    I don't think Yaya is the right actress for the job. Meagan Good is more suited for the role. Meagan would be better able to balance the dichotomy between happiness and angst that was Whitney's life.

  • RtSE Casting | June 8, 2014 10:46 PMReply

    Sounds like a good choice

  • CClear | June 8, 2014 3:01 PMReply

    YaYa is a phenomenal actress. I'm sure she'll leave her heart on the floor for this role, especially under the direction of AB. I'm really looking forward to seeing this.

  • Donella | June 8, 2014 2:39 PMReply

    I can see it. I liked her in the butler.

    I wish Angela and Yaya the best.

  • rj | June 8, 2014 11:01 AMReply

    The Big Question is can the sister even sing. I know that in today's world with voice overs and stuff. What more can she do.?

  • Cherokee rose | June 8, 2014 10:32 AMReply I get some sort of a prize because I never win those 'guess the weekend box office gross' contests and I finally get and All jokes aside, I think she is actually a great choice.

  • Dave's Deluxe | June 7, 2014 7:30 PMReply

    Hollywood essentially wondered who NOT to cast so they checked the user comments of Tambay's "Cast This" list.

  • Michael Jones | June 7, 2014 4:21 PMReply

    She certainly looks the part.

  • dee | June 7, 2014 3:59 PMReply

    Interesting news!

  • Can | June 7, 2014 2:21 PMReply

    Ok YaYa can't wait to see it!

  • Monique a Williams | June 7, 2014 1:09 PMReply

    Wonderful! Congrats Yaya!

  • Lala | June 7, 2014 1:06 PMReply

    Poor Bobby Brown. He was not responsible for her addiction. She was an addict before she married him. It was in her genes.

  • Troublemaker | June 7, 2014 12:48 PMReply

    Congratulations to Yaya on getting the Whitney role.

  • Shawn | June 7, 2014 12:44 PMReply

    This ain't nothing but some goddamn BS!! How the hell u gonna title the film "Whitney Houston" but only focus on her marriage to Bobby Brown? There was more to her than that. I won't be watching.

  • CrazyxCrazy | June 7, 2014 10:53 AMReply

    Yaya DaCosta is so hot, shame she married for money

  • LASunLover | June 9, 2014 7:40 PM

    Do you know Ya ya?
    How do you know she married for money?
    Ya ya is a pretty young woman who is educated, and has carried herself with class. Thus far she has done a good job with the acting jobs she has secured. They cast her for this part because she read for it and nailed it!
    Folks like you are just negative human beings.

  • Moni | June 7, 2014 10:59 AM


  • Peace82 | June 7, 2014 10:47 AMReply

    She was really good in The Butler so I'll definitely look forward to seeing this.

  • michele | June 7, 2014 7:55 AMReply

    Interesting. I hope she does well.

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