Brow Beat

Ava DuVernay Is Making a Documentary About Prince

Ava DuVernay at the Black Girls Rock! in Newark, New Jersey.
Ava DuVernay at the Black Girls Rock! in Newark, New Jersey. Paras Griffin/Getty Images

Ava DuVernay, director of the civil-rights drama Selma, the film adaptation of the fantasy novel A Wrinkle in Time, and the television series Queen Sugar, is working with Netflix on a documentary about Prince. It will follow the musician’s life and prolific career, up to his death in April 2016. The news comes just a month after the release of the artist’s first posthumous album, Piano and a Microphone 1983.

Since Prince’s estate handpicked DuVernay for this project, she will have full access to his vast archive and unreleased material. According to Deadline, the musician himself had contacted the director about a collaboration before his passing. “Prince was a genius and a joy and a jolt to the senses,” she DuVernay said in a statement, adding, “He shattered every preconceived notion, smashed every boundary, shared everything in his heart through his music. The only way I know how to make this film is with love. And with great care. I’m honored to do so and grateful for the opportunity entrusted to me by the estate.”

Following the success of 13th, which looks at the way racial injustice continues to be perpetuated in the prison system, this will be DuVernay’s second time partnering with the streaming service on a documentary. And while there is no release date yet, the filmmaker has been working alongside editor Spencer Averick, who also edited 13th, for several months. She has also been busy with the Central Park Five miniseries which will air on Netflix in 2019.