About Us Contact Us Privacy Policy Terms of Use Accuracy & Fairness Corrections & Clarifications Ethics Code Your Ad Choices
© MEAWW All rights reserved

Christina Milian replaces Naya Rivera in Starz's 'Step Up', fans say Season 3 recast is 'too much too soon'

After the tragic demise of Naya Rivera, the 'Step Up' team has hired Christina Milian to play the role of Collette Jones but fans are not ready to replace the late actress yet
Christina Milian replaces Naya Rivera in Starz's 'Step Up' (Getty Images)
Christina Milian replaces Naya Rivera in Starz's 'Step Up' (Getty Images)

Following the tragic demise of Naya Rivera, Starz’s ‘Step Up’ has hired Christina Milian to play Collette Jones. Milian, credited for ‘The Oath’ and ‘The Soundtrack’, is now enlisted by The Lionsgate TV production to star in Season 3. However, the news of Milian replacing Rivera did not sit too well with ‘Step Up’ fans who are currently showing their disdain towards the decision, while also remembering the actress who died by drowning in July 2020.

‘Step Up’ series creator and executive producer Holly Sorensen talked about Rivera’s death and confirmed the news of Milian replacing her in the show. In a released statement, Sorensen said: “Naya's death was a terrible loss to our world that we will, frankly, never stop mourning. It was almost impossible to consider there could be someone so graceful and loving who could both help us honor our loss, while also bringing a deep reservoir of talent to our show, in so many areas. Christina is an exceptional human and a dazzling performer and we are so happy she has joined our family."


Naya Rivera dead, 'Glee' star's body recovered from Lake Piru five days after she went missing

Naya Rivera died from accidental drowning with no drugs or alcohol in her system, reveals autopsy

A representative from Starz said that the decision of Milian’s casting in ‘Step Up’ was done after careful consideration of a wide variety of factors, including the highly serialized nature of the show and the fact that Rivera’s character had a prominent impact on the story. The decision was made along with the support of the cast, producers, and Rivera’s family, who allowed the show to continue and her character’s story to be told.

Naya Rivera (Getty Images)

An insider reached out to MEAWW and said, “The casting executive for the show spoke to Naya’s agent to confirm everyone was comfortable before moving forward.” If the source is to be believed, then Naya’s agent and manager reportedly checked with Rivera’s mother, who gave her blessing for the role to be recast.

Sorensen’s ‘Step Up’ is based on the ‘Step Up’ film series and follows the students and faculty of High Water -- Atlanta’s prominent performing arts school. The show followed the story of twins Tal and Janelle Baker, who moves to the new town only to find themselves thrust into a highly competitive world. In the series, Rivera played Collette Jones – the Queen of High Water.

"Naya is irreplaceable"

Rivera’s co-star Ne-Yo has also talked about the replacement and stated that Rivera’s “spirit lives on in our memories and every part of what this show is and will be.” She also spoke about Milian and how everyone from the team has welcomed her with open arms. However, ‘Step Up’ fans are not too happy with the news.

One user wrote: “i heard about the recast. i felt overwhelmed by it. i'm happy that the show is moving forward but i'm devastated knowing that they're moving forward without her. we love you naya- she will always be my collette jones.  but i'm wishing the show the best of luck”. Another fan wrote: “lot of things that don’t sit right w me. first the fact that they are replacing her while at the same time saying she’s irreplaceable, second the fact that they posted it on the 7th months, the fact that they said naya fans would ‘love it’ it all just feels very wrong and also++”. A third fan tweeted: “they could just write another character for christina and write collette jones out of the season, or do a tribute episode to her/naya but they replaced her, f**k i hate living” Another resonated similar thoughts: “As stated on insta ~ I won’t be watching ~ Naya was Step Up for me & it hasn’t even been a year since that horrific nightmare of a day ~ if Christina is playing MS. JONES ~ that is replacing Naya and IMO too much too soon”.





How Naya Rivera died?

The 33-year-old Rivera drowned at Lake Piru, near Santa Clarita, California, on July 8, 2020, while swimming with her four-year-old son Josey. At the time of the investigation, it was found that the 'Glee’ actress was visiting the lake for years and was considered a good swimmer by her family members. Josey told the investigating officers that he and his mother were swimming when she told him to get back onto the boat. Josey was found alone on their rented boat. Rivera’s body was recovered from the lake on the morning of July 13.

A memorial set up by fans to honor actress Naya Rivera at Lake Piru, California. (Getty Images)

After Rivera’s tragic death, her fans posted messages of support towards her family. Several politicians and performers from across the television, music, film, and theater industry also shared messages in her memory.

This article contains remarks made on the Internet by individual people and organizations. MEAWW cannot confirm them independently and does not support claims or opinions being made online.