Janet Jackson’s documentary to air on Lifetime and A&E in January 2022
Janet Jackson is kind of a paradox. She is one of the biggest pop stars on the planet and one of the most mysterious. Despite his dozens of monster successes and decades in the limelight, Jackson has managed to keep his privacy private, which is no easy task for a member of the Jackson family. That’s why the release of his next documentary JANET promises to be a landmark event.
Aired simultaneously for two nights on A&E and Lifetime in January 2022, JANET offers fans an “intimate, honest and unfiltered look” at one of the greatest versatile artists of the past 40 years. The four-hour movie was produced by Janet and her brother Randy, and it’s packed with footage from Jackson’s legendary career.
“This is my story told by me,” Jackson says in a trailer that premiered earlier this month. “Not through someone else’s eyes.”
In the teaser, famous friends like Missy Elliott, Mariah Carey and Paula Abdul sing the praises of Jackson. They are not the only ones who owe the singer a debt of gratitude. When Jackson released his successful third album, Control, in 1986, she defined a new model for strong and confident female pop. The album was about taking back her life from her parents and following her artistic instincts wherever they take. Control topped the Billboard 200 and had five Top 5 singles, positioning Jackson for even greater triumphs in the years to come.
As Jackson continued to rack up success with the powerful of 1989 Rhythm Nation 1814 and 1993 sweeter, sexier Janet, it has inspired several generations of future titans of pop and R&B. From Britney Spears and Christina Aguilera to Beyoncé and Rihanna, countless 21st century hitmakers have drawn direct influence from Jackson.
Its achievements are all the more remarkable in the light of its history. By the time Janet started making records in the 1980s, the world was already well acquainted with her brothers, including Michael Jackson, arguably the most famous person on the planet. And yet, against all odds, Jackson cultivated his own aesthetic.
On stage, there is no one like her. She is a fierce but sensual dancer who goes from topical songs to tender ballads to pop bops with remarkable ease. Although she has collaborated with many rappers and R&B singers, she is also responsible for “Black Cat”, one of the coolest rock songs of the 80s.
Quadruple nuclear threat (singer, dancer, songwriter, actress), Janet leaves everything on stage and then falls back into her own world, a place that audiences rarely see. Or at least that’s what she always did. The upcoming documentary is Jackson’s chance to turn the tale upside down and give fans the kind of access they’ve always dreamed of. “It’s the truth,” Janet said in the teaser. “Take it or leave it. Love it or hate it. It’s me.”