By: Renee Grant
A new documentary about Whitney Houston premiered at Tribeca Film Festival on Wednesday, April 26th. The film features never-before-seen footage of the dashing diva from on and off the stage throughout her career.
Adding to the story of the beloved singer, the doc also explores a long-rumored relationship between Houston and her best friend and assistant, Robyn Crawford. For years it was rumored that Houston and Crawford had a romantic relationship but it was never confirmed.
The project features archival interviews with close friends and family of Houston, although it’s said that her mother Cissy Houston, ex-husband Bobby Brown, and other close family members did not authorize the film.
In the film, the relationship is laid out convincingly through interviews with Houston’s former stylist and other close friends, pointing to Crawford’s eventually exile from Whitney’s life as the point where Houston began to spiral out of control.
“I don’t think she was gay, I think she was bisexual,” Houston’s longtime friend and stylist Ellin Lavar says. “Robyn provided a safe place for her…in that Whitney found safety and solace.”
The two met as teens in East Orange, New Jersey and remained friends for many years. The relationship is said to have been a point of contention between Brown and Crawford through the years. After Whitney’s 1999 My Love Is Your Love tour, tensions between Brown and Crawford came to a head and Crawford left. “That was the downfall of Whitney. Robyn was the person who was keeping her together,” Lavar says.
Houston passed away on February 11, 2012, of accidental drowning in a bathtub the day before the Grammy Awards. An autopsy showed that Houston had various drugs in her system at the time of her death.