Janis: Little Girl Blue, the new Janis Joplin documentary film created by Oscar-nominated director Amy Berg, is currently playing in movie theaters across the country. (Go see it while it’s still in the theaters!) But for those of you who don’t live near an art-house theater, you will be pleased to know that the theatrical run will be followed by airings on the PBS American Masters series.
Janis: Little Girl Blue had its premiere at the Venice Film Festival in late 2015. And it is set to be broadcast on American Masters on 5/3/2016.
Berg worked with the support of Joplin’s family on the film, which offers previously unseen glimpses of the singer’s personal life. Speaking with Billboard, Berg underlined her reasons for taking on the project while praising Joplin’s tremendous cultural impact.
“She put women in rock on the map. She literally was the first female rock star and she did it in such a strong way and we’re still reaping the benefits of that today,” Berg argued. “And I think her music is just as relevant today as it was in 1968-69.”
Joplin’s own words tell much of the film’s story, through a series of letters she wrote to her parents over the years, many of them made public here for the first time (and read by Southern-born indie rock star Cat Power). This correspondence is only one element of the stunning, previously unseen material Berg discovered during the seven years she has spent working on Janis: Little Girl Blue. New audio and video of Joplin in concert and in the studio, and even footage from her emotional return to Port Arthur for her 10th high school reunion, add depth and texture to this remarkable story.
Keep an eye on your local listings for more information.
Click here to read The Film Box commentary, by HelenHighly, that reviews Little Girl Blue and compares it to the Peggy Guggenheim documentary, Art Addict, also currently in release. The two stories have surprisingly similarities and together offer an insightful look into the nature of art and artists.
When she is not writing about film and art on her blog, HelenHighly.com, Helen Kaplow is busy being a culture vulture in her adopted home of New York City.