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CLOSE  claims Rihanna is avoiding Tyler Perry’s requests to star in an upcoming romantic comedy because of a warning from the late Whitney Houston.

Although Perry took Whitney’s daughter Bobbi Kristina under his wing after her mother’s death, putting her in his show “For Better or Worse,” the website quotes a source who claims Whitney warned the singer that Perry’s films were for African-American has-beens.

“Although Tyler has been courting Rihanna for a year and a half, hoping to build a movie around her, she has rejected the idea,” a source close to the star’s business affairs told “Rihanna has pointedly avoided meeting with him!”

According to the source, before Houston’s tragic death in 2012, Rihanna, 26, met her at a party and got her take on Perry’s movies, which include the Madea films, the “Why Did I Get Married?” franchise and the recent “Single Moms Club.”

“Whitney put her off Tyler by warning her bluntly that ‘Tyler’s films are for fading black stars, not rising ones,’” the source said. “Rihanna so respected Whitney because in addition to being one of the biggest pop stars ever, she starred in hit movies such as The Bodyguard.”

Rihanna feels it will be better for her career to do something similar to the 2012 science fiction war film “Battleship,” the source said.

“She’s ruling out doing a Tyler Perry-style romantic comedy because she thinks she works better in action roles, playing the tough girl.”

The source revealed Rihanna is “under a mandate” to get into another studio film before the end of the year.

You tell us, do you believe the source? Would it be a good idea for Rihanna to play in Tyler Perry’s film or would it destroy her brand?

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(Photo Source: PR Photos)