Anna Nicole Smith during "G-Phoria - The Award Show 4 Gamers" at Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, C...
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Anna Nicole Smith's Life And Death To Be Examined In New Netflix Doc

The documentary will cover the rise and tragic downfall of the American socialite.

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One by one it seems, the media has been forced to reckon with how it portrayed women in the early 2000s. The unfair treatment of pop culture icons like Janet Jackson, Alanis Morissette, Brittany Murphy and Britney Spears have all been questioned as fans recount their tumultuous careers. Now the late actress and model Anna Nicole Smith’s story is taking center stage in a new documentary for Netflix, Variety reports.

The untitled project will reportedly include exclusive footage from an unreleased documentary about Smith’s attempt to balance motherhood and fame. Per the log-line, Netflix’s adaptation is a “revelatory feature-length documentary about Anna Nicole Smith, featuring never-before-seen footage of the iconic Playboy and Guess jeans model, who blazed a trail through the 90’s before her tragic death at the age of 39.”

Ursula Macfarlane — whose previous credits include Untouchable, which tracks the downfall of film executive Harvey Weinstein — is directing the project. In a statement provided to Variety, she said, “I approached Anna Nicole’s story as an epic mystery tale. How did someone with so much charisma and jaw-dropping beauty, with the world at her feet, fall so far, so quickly?”

Smith entered Hollywood as a model before transitioning to film, but is oftentimes remembered best as a socialite who had a highly publicized marriage to 89-year-old billionaire J. Howard Marshall. Throughout her career she frequently appeared in the tabloids, where details of her personal life were exploited and sold for profit. She also had her own reality show in the pre-Kardashian era of early 2000s television, E!’s The Anna Nicole Show, which captured her everyday life. Smith died in in February 2007 in a Florida hotel room from an accidental overdose of prescription drugs.

Macfarlane explained the current interest in young-starlets felt like an opening to explore Smith’s story. “Now feels like the right time to re-examine the life of yet another beautiful young woman whose life has been picked over and ultimately destroyed by our culture.” She added, “I am thrilled to work with Netflix and Propagate to make a moving, unflinching and sensitive portrayal of one of the most misunderstood women of our time.”

The documentary, which is being produced by Alexandra Lacey, is currently in production. Premiere details should emerge as they finalize the project, but for now the release date is undetermined.

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