Netflix and RadicalMedia have announced that they are pairing up to produce "What Happened, Miss Simone?," to be directed by Academy Award nominated filmmaker Liz Garbus ("The Farm: Angola," "USA" and "Bobby Fischer Against the World"). The film will premiere exclusively in all territories where Netflix is available in 2015.
“In ‘What Happened, Miss Simone?,’ Liz Garbus paints a brave and provocative picture of Nina Simone – artist, civil rights activist and heroine – in a film that we’ve loved from day one and are proud to bring to our viewers around the world,” said Lisa Nishimura, Netflix VP of Original Documentary Programming.
“I’m thrilled that Netflix has embraced the incredible story of Nina Simone and partnered with RadicalMedia on this film,” said director Liz Garbus. “For each of her millions of fans, Nina feels like a treasured secret. With What Happened, Miss Simone?, I’m excited to help bring her passion, her music, and her story to the world.”
In what the press release describes as an "epic" documentary, director Liz Garbus’ film will interweave never-before-heard recordings and rare archival footage together with Nina’’s most memorable songs, incorporating never-before-heard audio tapes, recorded over the course of 3 decades, of Nina telling her life story to various interviewers and would-be biographers. Rare concert footage and archival interviews, along with diaries, letters, interviews with Nina’’s daughter, Lisa Simone Kelly, friends and collaborators, along with other exclusive materials, will make this the most authentic, personal, and unflinching telling of the extraordinary life of one of the 20th Century’s greatest recording artists – a portrait of one of the "least understood, yet most beloved, artists of our time."
"What Happened, Miss Simone?" is produced by Netflix and RadicalMedia in association with Moxie Firecracker.
The film is directed by Liz Garbus and produced by Amy Hobby ("Secretary," "Love, Marilyn"), Justin Wilkes ("Made in America," "Under African Skies"), Jayson Jackson ("Bridge & Tunnel" on Broadway) and Garbus.
Emmy–award nominated cinematographer Igor Martinovic ("House of Cards," "Man on Wire") shot the film and Joshua L. Pearson ("Made in America," "Under African Skies") edited. Sidney Beaumont ("Paradise Lost 3: Purgatory"), Jon Kamen ("The Fog of War"), Lisa Nishimura ("The Square," "Virunga"), Adam Del Deo ("The Square") and Lisa Simone Kelly serve as executive producers on the film.
The film was produced in cooperation with the Estate of Nina Simone.