Nina Simone's family asks Zoe Saldana to never mention Nina's name again!

Los Angeles - Nina Simone's family have hit out at Zoe Saldana after the trailer for the legendary jazz artist's biopic was released.

The 37-year-old actress plays the late civil rights activist - who died in 2003 aged 70 - in the upcoming film, Nina, but her family has slammed the star, asking her to never mention Nina's name again.

Zoe tweeted a quote from the singer after the trailer was released, writing: "I'll tell you what freedom is to me - No Fear.. I mean really, no fear #NinaSimone (sic)"

But the official Nina Simone Twitter account, which is now run by her estate, posted a reply to the comment saying: "cool story but please take Nina's name out your mouth. For the rest of your life (sic)"

Shortly afterwards, another tweet on Nina's account appeared to be referring to the trailer. It read: "Hopefully people begin to understand this is painful. Gut-wrenching, heartbreaking, nauseating, soul-crushing. It shall pass, but for now... (sic)"

A post on Nina's official Facebook account hit out at the film once again by encouraging her fans to hold a "listening/ viewing party" for the star on April 22 - the day of the film's release.

The post read: "In light of today's announcement, I encourage fans and eligible venues to host their own NINA SIMONE listening/viewing party on Friday, April 22nd.

"We can use this date as another opportunity to celebrate Nina's life and music. Let's create a positive from a negative by coming together and acknowledging the authentic Nina Simone.

"Nothing can diminish Nina or her legacy. No one can rob Nina of her gift - or rob us of the gift she shared with us. On April 22nd, let's allow the real NINA SIMONE the freedom to speak (and play and sing) for herself. (sic)."

What's more, several fans took to Twitter to claim that Zoe's face had been made darker for the motion picture. This sparked such an outrage with much of the backlash received by Zoe having to do with Nina's place in history.

This comes after Nina's daughter, Simone Kelly, previously admitted Zoe was "not the best choice" to portray her mother.  She previously said: "My mother was raised at a time when she was told her nose was too wide, her skin was too dark. Appearance-wise, this is not the best choice."

According to ABC, Zoe stood by the role by urging the public to withhold judgment until the film comes out.

Social media did not refrain from showing their distaste for the role selection, going as far as to suggest the role be played by the likes of Lauryn Hill, Walking Dead star Danai Gurira and even comedian Leslie Jones.

Watch the trailer here: