Christina Milian will take the place of Naya Rivera after the premature death of the actress last July. Starz announced Monday that Milian will take on the role of Collette Jones in the newly reimagined Increase Serie. Rivera originated the role for two seasons in Step Up: High Water when the series aired on YouTube. Before his death, Rivera had been preparing to begin production on the Starz series.
“I am very excited to join the Increase family, ‘”Milian said in a statement.” I know I have huge shoes to fill. Naya was amazing. I look forward to honoring Naya, her family, friends, and fans with a great performance. ”
Rivera died in July 2020 after a tragic boating accident on Lake Piro with her young son, Josey. the Joy alum made an impact on the Step Up: High Water aired during his time on the show.
“Naya’s death was a terrible loss to our world that, frankly, we will never stop crying,” said show creator and executive producer Holly Sorensen in a statement. “It was almost impossible to consider that there could be someone so graceful and caring who could help us honor our loss, while at the same time bringing a deep pool of talent to our show, in so many areas. Christina is an exceptional human and a dazzling artist and we are very happy that he has joined our family. ”
Rivera’s former co-star Ne-Yo added: “You can’t replace Naya. Let’s clear it up. The spirit lives in our memories and in every part of what this show is and will be. Christina has great shoes to fill and she knows that, which speaks to her poise and respect as a person and as an artist. I’m more than confident in her ability to bring energy and light to this character that Naya’s fans and the rest of the world will love. “
Before her death, Rivera spoke to ET about being an obsessive fan of the show.
“When the first season came out, I was googling at midnight, like, ‘Where is he?'” He recalled in March 2019. “I was texting everyone and then I saw it all in two days. It was so Okay . ”