Xscape calls TV One biopic 'disrespectful,' producing its own project

When Xscape announced it would reunite nearly 20 years after its sudden, acrimonious split, it was sweet news to R&B fans who had long held out for the return of the beloved girl group.

But the group’s return comes with a bit of drama — and not from any of its members.

The issue? A planned biopic that’s being prepped by TV One without the group’s involvement, which has led its members to launch a competing project.

During its upfront presentation last week, TV One announced "Who Can I Run To: The Xscape Story.”

Inspired by the group’s installment of the network’s highly rated “Behind the Music”-esque series “Unsung,” TV One’s film will trace the rise and split of the group composed of Kandi Burruss-Tucker, Tameka “Tiny” Harris and sisters LaTocha and Tamika Scott.

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The episode, which aired in 2015, saw the oft-warring group that split in 1998 amid turmoil participate in interviews. Although the women of Xscape were split on the final product, the episode was the most watched installment in the series’ nine seasons.

TV One’s film is being produced in partnership with music producer Jermaine Dupri, who signed the group in 1991 and launched it to multi-platinum success.

Amid talks to finally reunite in conjunction with the 25th anniversary of its debut, “Hummin Comin’ at Cha,” the group learned TV One was perusing a biopic without ever reaching out them to participate, according to multiple sources close to the group.

“We feel the recent announcement of an unauthorized biopic on our lives is disrespectful and disappointing,” the group said in a statement. “We are not, in any way, participating in that project and it will never ‘represent’ our true story.”

Xscape teamed with “Love & Hip Hop” producer and music executive Mona Scott-Young to executive produce its own biopic through Scott-Young’s Monami Entertainment.

The group is also planning a docuseries that will follow it as it preps its first live performances since its 1998 split.

Multiple networks have expressed interest in the biopic and docuseries, but no decision has been made, sources close to the group told The Times.

During its run, Xscape was one of the more successful R&B groups, with three consecutive platinum albums and six Top 10 hits on the Billboard charts.

gerrick.kennedy@latimes.com

For more music news follow me on Twitter:@GerrickKennedy

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