In the latest case of dueling documentaries, Netflix Inc. is planning its own movie about Britney Spears, on the heels of one just released by Hulu.
Filmmaker Erin Lee Carr, who’s specialized in true crime documentaries, is directing the project about the troubled pop star, a cause celebre among fans who believe she is being held against her will.
The earlier project, “Framing Britney Spears,” was produced by the New York Times and released on Hulu this month, quickly becoming one of the most talked-about documentaries of the year. The Hulu film chronicles the media’s misogynistic approach toward Spears throughout her career, and explores a conservatorship that places much of her life under her father’s control. The documentary also prompted Spears’ former boyfriend, Justin Timberlake, to apologize for his treatment of women.
This will be at least the second time in recent years where Netflix and Hulu made competing documentaries on the same story. Both services released films about the Fyre Festival, which was marketed as a luxury music festival in the Bahamas but ended up a disaster.
It’s not unusual for movie studios to be working on the same projects at the same time, but competing documentaries have become far more common in the streaming era. Services are leaning on such films as lower-cost, appealing programs, and all of them are hungry for fresh programming.
Carr’s project isn’t completed and doesn’t have a release date yet. It was already underway before “Framing Britney Spears” debuted.