As much as documentaries are in vogue since the pandemic, the sub-genre of documentaries on celebs have also found many takers in the past two years. Celebrities are being approached by various OTT platforms to channel their fandom into viewership. We bring a list of celeb docu-series/films and what makes them popular.
The more controversial the star, the better the traction — that’s one motto of makers/platforms when they pick a celeb for their next ‘click-bait’ docu-series. But some of them are really well-made as viewers demand more of their content by the end. Take for instance, docu-film, Framing Britney Spears, released in February 2021 which sparked #FreeBritney movement amidst her ongoing conservatorship case. The popularity and audiences’ curiosity to know more about it led into making of another documentary film, Britney Vs Spears, for Netflix.
Upcoming celeb documentaries
- BTS Monuments: Beyond the Star: Disney + Hotstar
- This is AP Dhillon: Amazon Prime Video
- Untitled documentary on Rihanna
- Louis Armstrong’s Black & Blues: Apple TV+
Docu-series or films on sports celebs
- McGregor Forever (2023) Netflix
- Reggie (2023) Prime Video
- 14 Peaks: Nothing is Impossible (2021) Netflix
- Stephen Curry: Underrated (2023) Apple TV+
- The Last Dance (2020) Netflix
- Shaq (2022) Prime Video
Another case that garnered much media attention last year was that of Johnny Depp and Amber Heard’s legal battle. While Discovery+ and Prime Video aired a documentary titled Johnny vs. Amber around the time of their ongoing trial, giving details about what went wrong in the ex husband-wife’s relation, there’s another, Depp vs Heard, releasing on Channel 4 soon. While Indian audience will have to wait longer for it to air, this three-part series is directed by BAFTA-nominated Emma Cooper.
Another controversial celeb figure, Ye (Kanye West) brought Jeen-Yuhs: A Kanye Trilogy last year, but then he went on to target the makers.
On mental health
The Selena Gomez documentary made many subscribe to Apple TV just to gain an opinion and a front row ticket to Hailey Bieber versus Selena drama. But the series offered so much more than that. Selena Gomez: My Mind and Me documents her struggles with her physical and mental well-being after she got diagnosed with Lupus and Bipolar disorder. In fact, it is directed by Alek Keshishian, who had previously made Madonna: Truth or Dare, on pop-star Madonna.
One for the fans
Many public figures have used this opportunity to develop a deeper connection with fans by giving them access to their personal journey. KPop band BTS’s fandom that took over the world can also be traced back to the docu-film or series that were made since 2019. The latest one, released on Disney + Hotstar in 2023, SUGA Road to D-DAY is about BTS member and music producer, Suga.
Another releases Pamela: A Love Story (2023) and Billie Eilish: The World’s a Little Blurry (2021) followed the career and rise to fame of Pamela Anderson and Billie Eilish, respectively. Similarly, there are documentaries on celebs Shawn Mendes, Ariana Grande and Travis Scott.
Celebrated singer and Grammy-winner, Beyonce has more than seven documentaries and concert specials, Homecoming, being the latest, which was released in 2019. This film is a ground-breaking and emotional documentary chronicling Beyoncé’s historic 2018 Coachella performance, showcasing her artistic vision, cultural significance, and tireless work ethic. The same way, Korean girl band, Black Pink released their documentary with debut album, Light Up the Sky.
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