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Despite all the media attention and outcries from the Houghton family, actress Zendaya Coleman is moving forward with filming the Lifetime biopic.

During an interview with Billy Bush and guest co-host Meghan McCain on “Access Hollywood” this week, Zendaya opened up about her controversial role.

On the backlash over playing Aaliyah:

“I think people are entitled to their own opinions.  Some people know me from the Disney channel and maybe they don’t think I can handle the role or do whatever.  But at the same time, I was cast in the part.  I auditioned like everyone else and I was cast.  My passion and my love for Aaliyah is so strong.  I’m just going to channel her and do my best to honor someone that I love so much and have and taken so much from in my career.”

On Aaliyah’s family being opposed to the new biopic:

“We haven’t started production or anything.  But the family was my number one concern.  My important thing about this was the mother & the brother… and that Lifetime reached out.  I didn’t feel comfortable until they did.  So they’re working on that and reaching out to the family to make sure everything’s ok.  I wrote a letter, a whole bunch of things. I’ve been an Aaliyah fan my entire life.  I auditioned like anyone else and I got cast in the part.  I want it to be something [the family] is proud of and what she would be proud of.  It’s a Lifetime movie.  So it’s just to honor her. And to show how incredible she is and the things she was able to do.”

Watch the full interview below:

Photo: Getty Images