It was announced today that Showtime Documentary Films will premiere WHITNEY. “CAN I BE ME,” a film exploring the career and complicated life of Whitney Houston, at the Tribeca Film Festival. The screening will take place on April 26 at the SVA Theater, with subsequent screenings all weekend. If you won’t be in our wonderful city at that time, you will still get a chance to see the film, the documentary will air on SHOWTIME later this year. The film was directed by acclaimed BAFTA Award winner Nick Broomfield (Kurt & Courtney, Tales of the Grim Sleeper).
“Nick is a bold storyteller with an acclaimed track record of provocative documentary filmmaking,” said Vinnie Malhotra, Senior Vice President, Documentary and Unscripted Programming, Showtime Networks Inc. “Showtime Documentary Films is excited to partner with him on this project, as he delves deep into the life of Whitney Houston to tell the real story behind the rise and fall of one of America’s most iconic singers.”
Whitney Houston was a six-time Grammy winner, and one of the most successful female recording artists of all time. After a troubled marriage to singer Bobby Brown and many years of struggles with addiction, Houston died suddenly and tragically at age 48. With behind the scenes materials, candid interviews and performance footage – including many of Houston’s greatest hits – WHITNEY. “CAN I BE ME” will offer a raw and uncensored look at Houston, exploring the impact her life and death had on the people around her and the world of music.
According to her band members, “Can I be me?” was Houston’s favorite expression, one she used so much that they sampled it to play at the start of rehearsals. The film explores Whitney’s central dilemma: even though she had made millions of dollars, had more consecutive number ones than The Beatles and was recognized as having one of the greatest voices of all time, she still couldn’t do what she wanted to do, either professionally or in her personal life.
Produced by Showtime and BBC, WHITNEY. “CAN I BE ME” joins an esteemed list of projects under the Showtime Documentary Films banner that focus on the lives and legacies of culture-defining figures, including ERIC CLAPTON: A LIFE IN 12 BARS, which will screen at festivals and theaters this year before airing nationally on SHOWTIME this fall, and an upcoming documentary film on John Belushi’s life and career.
WHITNEY. “CAN I BE ME” is executive produced by John Battsek through his Passion Pictures label, Patrick Holland, Shani Hinton, Charles Finch and Ben Silverman. Nick Broomfield co- directed the film with Rudi Dolezal. Broomfield also co-produced with Marc Hoeferlin.