”Controlling Britney Spears” with Samantha Stark & Liz Day


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After pop star Britney Spears’ controversial 13-year conservatorship finally came to an end in November 2021, Spears credited the #FreeBritney movement: “I honestly think you guys saved my life.” Filmmakers Samantha Stark and Liz Day also played no small role. When their documentary “Framing Britney Spears” premiered in February of that year, it sparked a flurry of international news coverage and put the spotlight on a conservatorship that seemed less about protecting Spears than it was about controlling and silencing her — and enriching her father and conservator, Jamie Spears. In the months following their film, Samantha and Liz continued to delve into the story and their September 2021 follow-up film, the Emmy®-nominated “Controlling Britney Spears” laid out even more shocking revelations.

The two filmmakers joined Mike and Ken for a deep dive exploration of the ins-and-outs of the conservatorship and the mechanisms used to surveil and manipulate Spears. How is it possible that a mega superstar, who kept to a rigorous performance schedule and was raking in millions of dollars, continued to be subjected to a court-ordered conservatorship? What caused some of the key people working for Britney to break their silence and open up to the filmmakers, at their own potential legal peril? And in what ways does the stigma of mental illness play a part in the Britney Spears saga? Tune in to our conversation to hear how these two highly skilled and determined journalists/filmmakers broke this important story, which continues to resonate and reverberate well-beyond Britney herself.

“Controlling Britney Spears”, which is nominated for the 2022 Emmy Award for Outstanding Documentary or Nonfiction Special, is available for streaming on Hulu.

Hidden Gems:

Liz: 7 Up

Samantha: Special Flight

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