Tiffany Haddish as Olympian Florencia Griffith Joyner? Biopic casting divides fans


A forthcoming biopic regarding Olympic track-and-field legend Florencia Griffith Joyner starring comedian Tiffany Haddish is formally off and running.

But not everyone is aboard with Hollywood’s approach to the late athlete’s legacy.

A representative for Haddish confirmed Friday to The Times that the particular “Girls Trip” breakout is set to produce and star in a film discovering the life and career of Joyner, referred to fondly simply by fans as “Flo-Jo. ”

At the 1984 and 1988 Olympics, Flo-Jo was a standout member of the us track-and-field team, shattering reports while raking in several gold and silver medals across the 100-meter, 200-meter, 4×400-meter and 4×100-meter events. In 1998, she passed away in her sleep right after suffocating due to an epileptic seizure.


“I am looking forward to telling Flo-Jo’s story the way it should be told, ” Haddish said in a statement. “My goal with this film is making sure that younger decades know my ‘she-ro’ Flo-Jo, the fastest woman on earth to this day, existed. ”

The narrative function will anchor a larger content material package developed by Haddish plus studio game1 that will include a tandem documentary series plus podcast.

Furthermore on the production team for your project is Flo-Jo’s husband and former coach, Ing Joyner, with whom Haddish has been training in preparation for your role. According to the casting statement, Haddish has adopted a good work out regimen similar to Flo-Jo’s whilst immersing herself in the character.

“Working with Tiffany has been a great satisfaction — she is incredibly dedicated, focused, and committed to representing the spirit of Florencia accurately, whose legacy of making a difference in the world will survive for generations to come, ” Joyner said in a declaration.

“I hope that this film touches all who see it and inspires people to BE the change the world so desperately needs right now! ”

On Thursday, Variety smashed the news of Haddish’s spreading, which instantly divided social media marketing. While several fans lauded the Grammy winner as “perfect” for the part, other people worried the comedy superstar wouldn’t be able to do the Olympic icon’s trailblazing journey “justice. ”


Thus far, Haddish has designed a name for very little on the giant screen via comedies such as “Girls Trip, ” “Night School” and “Like a Boss. ” The upcoming Flo-Jo biopic will mark her most high-profile dramatic turn to date.

“I hope she understands the assignment… because if she don’t…. Whew, ” tweeted one person .

“My heart contains large amount FOR you @TiffanyHaddish, ” another replied to a tweet from Haddish vowing to honour Flo-Jo’s legacy. “How exciting and what an honor. You are definitely reaping what you plant. I’m so ready to notice this haha. ”

In response to someone else who seem to hailed Flo-Jo as their “idol” and pleaded with the actor not to “mess this up, ” Haddish tweeted , “If I actually mess this up I am going to kick my own ass. ”


A couple of pitched their own casting suggestions in lieu of Haddish. Among the frontrunners was “A Black Lady Sketch Show” creator and star Robin Thede, regarded as by many to possess the look and acting chops necessary to take on Flo-Jo’s signature one-legged tracksuits.

Regardless of Haddish’s past credits, others opposed the casting choice due to controversial remarks Haddish produced last month about recent violence in the Tigray region of Ethiopia.

According to accounts from Tigrayan survivors, government forces massacred more than 160 people recording as part of Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s months-long, fatal attack on the Tigray area, which began after the Tigray People’s Liberation Front, or TPLF, targeted a government military base.


Given that November, people in Tigray have been subjected to “extrajudicial killings, sexual violence, looting of property, mass executions plus impeded humanitarian access, ” the United Nations’ special advisor on the prevention associated with genocide said in a statement.

And U. S. Secretary of State Antony J. Blinken told a House Foreign Matters Committee hearing that authorities forces — comprising the particular Ethiopian army, soldiers through neighboring Eritrea and state-sponsored militiamen from the Amhara region — had committed works of “ethnic cleansing. ”

Haddish, who will be of Eritrean descent, came sharp criticism last week to get asking where “the bodies” are during a Clubhouse discussion regarding the events in Tigray, adding “but there’s a whole bunch of Eritrean bodies though. All of us see those. ”


“A full blown genocide denier shouldnt have the permit to play such an important determine, ” one individual tweeted Tuesday. “[Game1] should seriously reconsider in light associated with Tiffany’s recent comments for the #TigrayGenocide . ”

“This is storytelling at its best – a global celebrity portraying and honoring one more global superstar, ” mentioned game1 co-CEO Greg Economou in a statement.