Tina Turner, the iconic musician known as “the Queen of Rock ‘n’ Roll,” died on Wednesday at the age of 83.
As the world mourns her loss, her legacy continues to shine. A significant part of that legacy is Angela Bassett, who played Turner in the biopic What’s Love Got to Do with It.
Bassett is among the many celebrities who have paid tribute to the legendary performer, who rose to prominence in the 1960s.
Bassett’s portrayal of Tina Turner in the 1993 film What’s Love Got to Do with It earned her an Oscar nomination and a place in the pantheon of music biopics.
The film tells the story of Turner’s life, from a tumultuous childhood to her feud with her abusive ex-husband Ike Turner. Throughout it all, Bassett portrayed Turner with a fierce intensity that honored her spirit and her resilience.
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But Bassett’s relationship with Turner went beyond their shared experience on the set of What’s Love Got to Do with It.
As Bassett recalled in an Instagram post after Turner’s death, the rock icon personally gave her hair and makeup for the film’s final day of shooting.
“Everyone kept knocking on the door, wanting to be so helpful,” Bassett said in an interview with InStyle. “And she was like, ‘No, no, no. We’re fine. Leave us alone.’ And she did my makeup and hair in a quarter of the time that my hairstylist did. And it was just as fabulous.”
Bassett’s portrayal of Turner earned her praise from the music legend herself. In a tribute she wrote for TIME Magazine’s 100 Most Influential People list last month, Turner called Bassett “perfect” for the role.
“Angela, the first time we met, you didn’t look, sound or move like me—that came later after you worked so hard to make it happen,” Turner wrote. “But even then, I could see that the young woman standing before me had strength, determination, and big, big dreams, just like me.”
Turner went on to praise Bassett for her work on the film, saying that “you honored all the women you play, just as you honored me. And you’re still perfect.”
tina turner teaching angela bassett her signature walk & moves for the whats love got to do with it film. a moment. pic.twitter.com/4Cuksu6zAU— khalia. | the little mermaid day 🍨🌿 (@VERONASFILMS) May 24, 2023
The friendship between the two women lasted long after the film wrapped. In her Instagram post, Bassett shared the “final words” that Turner said to her:
“You never mimicked me. Instead, you reached deep into your soul, found your inner Tina, and showed her to the world.”
Those words are a testament to the connection that Bassett and Turner shared. It’s a bond that goes beyond the confines of a movie set or a shared biography. It’s a tribute to Turner’s resilience in the face of adversity and to Bassett’s ability to bring her story to life.
As the world says goodbye to Tina Turner, it’s worth remembering the legacy that she leaves behind.
Her music, her story, and her spirit will continue to inspire generations to come. And the bond between Turner and Bassett will remain a symbol of the power of resilience, determination, and friendship.