Zendaya honored the late singer Ronnie Spector in an Instagram post. The Ronettes singer passed away from cancer on January 12. In addition to sharing sweet sentiments about Spector, Zendaya vowed to make her proud — which holds a lot of weight given that the 25-year-old is slated to play the singer in an upcoming biopic.
While not much is known about this project, it was announced in 2020 that Zendaya was cast to play Spector in the A24 biopic called Be My Baby, appropriately titled after the hit single by the girl group The Ronnettes. The exclusive went on to say that the studio closed a deal for rights to Spector’s life story and her memoir of the same name.
Deadline also went on to state that “Spector chose Zendaya as the actress she wished to portray her in her early years.”
What did Zendaya say about Spector?
Following Spector’s passing, the Spider-Man star had shared two images of the singer onto her Instagram account. One image is a black-and-white classic and the other is a fun polaroid of the two dated to December 21, 2018.
She wrote, “This news just breaks my heart. To speak about her as if she’s not with us feels strange as she is so incredibly full of life. There’s not a time I saw her without her iconic red lips and full teased hair, a true rockstar through and through. Ronnie, being able to know you has been one of the greatest honors of my life.”
Zendaya continued to “thank” the singer in her caption. She continued, “Thank you for sharing your life with me, I could listen to your stories for hours and hours. Thank you for your unmeasured talent, your unwavering love for performing, your strength, resilience and your grace. There is absolutely nothing that could dim the light you cast.”
“I admire you so much and am so grateful for the bond we share. You are a magical force of greatness and the world of music will never be the same. I wish everyone got to experience you the way I did. We celebrate your beautiful life and give you all the flowers you so rightfully deserve,” she added.
Her emotional statement ended with a call for Spector to “rest in great power.” She concluded it with, “I hope to make you proud.”
Statement from Spector’s family
Spector’s passing came as a shock to many who have deeply felt the back-to-back losses of late-2021 going into early 2022. Spector’s family released a short, yet detailed statement following her death.
They wrote that Spector died, surrounded by family, following a “brief battle with cancer.” Her final wishes included a call for donations to local women’s shelters or to the American Indian College Fund.
Published to Spector’s website, her family wrote, “Our beloved earth angel, Ronnie, peacefully left this world today after a brief battle with cancer. She was with family and in the arms of her husband, Jonathan. Ronnie lived her life with a twinkle in her eye, a spunky attitude, a wicked sense of humor and a smile on her face. She was filled with love and gratitude.”
They went on to write, “Her joyful sound, playful nature and magical presence will live on in all who knew, heard or saw her. In lieu of flowers, Ronnie requested that donations be made to your local women’s shelter or to the American Indian College Fund.”
The final lines state that funeral arrangements will be shared soon and that the family is currently asking for privacy while they grieve their great loss.