Even while he was alive, music legend Prince was an enigmatic figure who lent himself to a lot of speculation. Posthumously, interest in the singer/musician’s life has only increased.
Thankfully, Netflix has answered our prayers and they are releasing a documentary about Prince’s life, according to Variety. For those concerned that his life is too sprawling and epic to condense into one standard documentary film, you’re in luck: it will be a full documentary series.
The series will be directed by Ava DuVernay, the director of such dramatic films as Selma, A Wrinkle in Time, Middle of Nowhere, and I Will Follow. Her past documentaries include This is the Life and Netflix’s 13th, for which she was nominated for Best Documentary Feature at the Academy Awards in 2017.
Upon the release of the news of the Prince project, Duvernay tweeted:
“Prince was a genius, a joy and a jolt to the senses. He was like no other. He shattered preconceived notions, smashed boundaries, and shared his heart through his music. The only way I know how to make this film is with love and great care. I’m honored to do so and grateful.” https://t.co/fNsISCwtzg
— Ava DuVernay (@ava) October 30, 2018
Some of Prince’s biggest hits include the songs “Kiss”, “1999”, “I Would Die 4 U”, “I Wanna Be Your Lover”, “Little Red Corvette”, “When Doves Cry” and “Adore”. He starred in the 1984 film Purple Rain, which was soundtracked by his hit album of the same name.
Prince’s estate is reportedly in full cooperation with the production, offering photographs and other materials, as they have been since the singer’s passing with their release of archived music and his discography to streaming services.
With the inevitable success of Bohemian Rhapsody and the impending Rocket Man, it seems probable that Prince’s life will also soon also be exploited for a Hollywood rock biopic that will no doubt be painfully mediocre. Fortunately, this documentary series should arrive first.
It is curious, the documentary world’s shift from feature films to docuseries lately. Perhaps it’s for the best, letting a story have the space to breathe. Perhaps it’s a bastardization of Netflix to get more streams. Perhaps it’s a sign of editors with little self-restraint. Perhaps it’s telling of our diminishing attention spans that we can’t sit through a full documentary in one sitting.
Regardless, if Prince’s private life was half as riveting as his music, this will be a joy to watch.