'Framing Britney Spears' filmmakers already discussing sequel: We've gotten 'some really interesting tips'
The filmmakers behind Framing Britney Spears are already discussing a sequel.
The New York Times's Liz Day, senior editor for the documentary, appeared on The Vault By Access Hollywood podcast and said they've received many new tips to investigate, regarding Britney Spears's life and conservatorship, since the film debuted on Hulu on Feb. 5. There was also a lot of material, including on-camera interviews, that they didn't use.
"We had no idea it would resonate the way it has," Day said of the doc, which has sparked conversations about the culture that enabled the pop star’s harassment. And that applies not just to the general public but "the principals like Justin Timberlake or people like Sarah Silverman who are owning up to things they said in the past. So we're really, really shocked."
Day said the filmmaking team has "heard from some well-placed insiders since the documentary has aired. We've heard both very positive things and also some really interesting tips that we want to investigate further."
And, yes, that could lead to a sequel.
“We really hope so," she said. "There was so much that made the cutting room floor because we just didn’t have the time to get into it. There’s so much in our notebooks that we would love to do a part two on.”
It would focus on the people around Spears, many of whom they reached out to but they declined to participate.
“There’s a lot of conversation about her business manager," Lou Taylor of Tri-Star Sports and Entertainment Group, who resigned abruptly last fall, "and the role they played [in] the conservatorship and managing Britney's money. There's just a lot of different players that we didn't get into for time but I think would be really interesting to explore further."
Day also said she'd love to talk to Spears's bodyguard Robert "Big Rob" Feggans. (Day previously told Yahoo she interviewed Spears's high school boyfriend Reg Jones and first husband Jason Alexander, but neither interview was used in the doc.)
As for whether Britney Spears herself has watched the documentary, that still appears to be up for debate.
"We don't know. We have heard that she is aware of it and that she's aware of everything in it. Whether or not she's actually watched it, we don't know," Day shared.
Day also spoke about the cultural conversation going on right now — and how Diane Sawyer, Matt Lauer and others have been called out, in addition to Timberlake and Sarah Silverman, for their treatment of Spears at the time.
"I haven't really watched the Diane Sawyer interview in the last few years, but I still feel comfortable saying I don't feel she would do that today," she said of the veteran newswoman's aggressive questioning of Spears about what she did that made Timberlake break up with her. "I very much think it was a sign of the times. Matt Lauer was doing it. Everyone wanted to hold Britney accountable for the example she sets for young girls. Obviously, that's a lot of pressure to put on any one young woman."
Day said there was just a whole "machine — this tabloid industrial gossip machine" at the time, also including the relentless paparazzi and the tabloids paying millions for Spears photos, that made for an out of control situation.
"I also think we all played a part in it too," she said of the public. "Personally, I bought those tabloids. I clicked on Perez Hilton. I think consumers fueled that appetite for those paparazzi to invade her space like that."
Day hopes we can learn from the doc — and prevent another Spears situation.
"I think what I'm most interested in is seeing how [it] can impact our behavior today," she said. "So sparking conversations around what celebrities are we treating this way [now] that we'll look back on 10 years from now and think: We shouldn't be making these jokes."
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