Hulu developing R. Kelly documentary based on sex abuse claims
Hulu and BuzzFeed are teaming up for a new documentary film about the sex abuse claims lodged against R. Kelly.
The feature film will focus on the self-dubbed Pied Piper’s “alleged systematic abuse and exploitation of young black women,” EW has learned. Linzee Troubh and Shani Hilto of BuzzFeed News developed the project, which will be directed by Lyric Cabral.
The R&B musician behind Trapped in the Closet and Write Me Back has been accused by multiple women of sexual misconduct and abuse. BuzzFeed News’ reporting on the situation will be featured in the documentary, including commentary from music critic/radio host Jim DeRogatis (serving as a consulting producer) and deputy national editor Marisa Carroll.
The film will also include interviews with alleged abuse survivors and R. Kelly’s associates.
Kelly’s management team did not immediately respond to EW’s request for comment on the documentary, though the performer has previously denied the claims against him.
Faith Rodgers, one of Kelly’s ex-girlfriends, is suing the performer for sexual battery and “willfully, deliberately, and maliciously” infecting her with herpes. Asante McGee and Kitti Jones, two more exes, came forward on Megyn Kelly Today in May to detail allegations that Kelly was abusive and controlling while keeping them in his various homes. “You would have to send a text message to one of his runners, just asking if you could go to the restroom, and they would relay the information to him,” Jones had said. “You weren’t free to walk throughout the house.”
Jones also said Kelly treated her like “one of his pets” in a “sex dungeon,” according to a BBC Two documentary that aired in March. Jerhonda Pace, meanwhile, had come forward with claims that, while underage, she was groomed to “please” Kelly by another woman.
“Mr. Robert Kelly is both alarmed and disturbed at the recent revelations attributed to him,” a statement issued from Kelly’s team read. “Mr. Kelly unequivocally denies such allegations and will work diligently and forcibly to pursue his accusers and clear his name.”
Lifetime is also working on an R. Kelly docuseries and feature-length movie for the network’s Stop Violence Against Women public affairs campaign.