‘I totally understand where she’s coming from’
The director of Framing Britney Spears has reacted to Britney Spears’s criticism of documentaries about her life.
Samantha Stark is the director behind the programme, which aired in February this year as an instalment of The New York Times Presents, a series of standalone documentaries.
After it aired, Framing Britney Spears sparked a reckoning about the treatment of the singer by the public and the media, as well as conversations about celebrity and mental health.
The documentary has also found renewed significance throughout the legal proceedings pertaining to the conservatorship controlling Spear’s finances and personal life.
In a recent interview with The Hollywood Reporter, Stark was asked about a 17 July Instagram post on which Spears stated that she “didn’t like the way the documentaries bring up humiliating moments from the past”.
Spears didn’t specify which documentaries she was referring to in the post, but Framing Britney Spears is the most high-profile documentary released about the singer in recent years.
“While we were making the film, we talked a lot about re-traumatising Britney and her family by showing these moments,” Stark said. “Part of the reason it’s called Framing Britney Spears is there are these still-photo frames that were humiliating to her.”
Stark explained that it felt “important to pull outside the frame because so many people had all these assumptions based on one frame, one still image that they saw” and that the team “always tried to have [Spears] talk back to [the paparazzi] if we could”.
“She 100 per cent deserves to be mad that we’re still looking at those photos, because it’s ridiculous that we’re still looking at them, and they shouldn’t have been there in the first place,” the director added.
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“As much as I want to explain myself to her, I totally understand where she’s coming from.”
Framing Britney Spears is up for Outstanding Documentary Or Nonfiction Special at the 2021 Emmys, as well as Outstanding Picture Editing For A Nonfiction Programme. The awards ceremony is scheduled for 19 September 2021.