Late last year we heard that Apple was working on producing a $25 million feature-length documentary on singer-songwriter Billie Eilish, with the surprising twist that it would be making its debut on Apple TV+ rather Apple Music, where the company has previously published most of its music documentaries.
The news originally broke shortly after Apple held its first-ever Apple Music awards, during which Eilish took the top two spots, winning both Global Artist of the Year as well as Album of the Year for her full-length debut album, WHEN WE FALL ASLEEP, WHERE DO WE GO, so it wasn’t particularly surprising, although of course Apple remained fairly quiet about its plans, as usual.
Now, however, with the new big-budget documentary basically in the can, Apple has officially announced that not only will it be coming to Apple TV+, but will be making a full theatrical debut this coming February.
‘The World’s a Little Blurry’
The film, which is titled Billie Eilish: The World’s a Little Blurry, is being produced directly by Apple Original Films in partnership with Interscope Films, Darkroom, This Machine, and Lighthouse Management & Media, and was directed by filmmaker R.J. Cutler who is best known for his work on Belushi, The September Issue, and The War Room.
Apple also shared a trailer for the new documentary, which sounds like it will be hitting both theatres and Apple TV+ at around the same time; while Apple didn’t specify exact dates, the premiere is set as “February 2021” for both, which means that even if they don’t launch on the same day, the Apple TV+ release won’t be far behind the theatrical one.
While Apple hasn’t shared any more specific details in its announcement, insiders have indicated that the film follows the then-17-year-old pop sensation in the weeks after her debut album release, along with insights into her family life and behind the scenes of her public appearances.
In addition to taking home the debut Apple Music Awards, Billie Eilish also came away from the 62nd Grammy Awards this past January with awards for Best New Artist, Album of the Year, Record of the Year, Song of the Year, and Best Pop Vocal Album.
She also performed her take on the Beatles’ Yesterday at the 92nd Academy Awards, and subsequently released an official James Bond theme song, No Time to Die, for the coming Bond film of the same name.
This is actually the second music documentary to make its debut on Apple’s streaming service, following The Beastie Boys Story from earlier this year, however The World’s a Little Blurry is the first to feature a current highly-acclaimed artist, and undoubtedly has the potential to garner a much larger viewing audience.
However, Apple is also no stranger to music industry documentaries — it’s been releasing films on Apple Music for years featuring musicians, producers, and songwriters across a variety of genres, including songwriter Ed Sheeran, legendary producer Clive Davis, rapper Sean “Puff Daddy” Coombs and his label Bad Boy Records, and even a feature film on the venerable Roland 808 Drum Machine that included interviews with artists like New Order and Pharrell Williams.
The debut of these new documentaries on Apple TV+ would seem to signal the end of the era of Apple Music documentaries, however, which could be disappointing for music fans who have enjoyed the ability to watch these exclusively on Apple Music, as they’ll now have an additional service to subscribe to, although presumably the new Apple One bundles should make that slightly less of a problem.
Billie Eilish: The World’s a Little Blurry will premiere in theaters and on Apple TV+ in February 2021. An exact date has not yet been announced.