September 3, 2021 Showtime premieres the Rick James documentary Bitchin’: The Sound and Fury of Rick James. The documentary was directed by Sacha Jenkins and executive produced by Ty James.
Bitchin’: The Sound and Fury of Rick James explores not only Rick’s journey to becoming a cultural icon but the challenges within his life that molded the man behind the figure. Rick James was a pioneer of the funk rock genre and has left an imprint on music forever through hits like Ghetto Life and protegees such as Prince and Tina Marie. However, his journey to musical success and finding his voice within the industry was one pathed with trauma, substance abuse, and the historical changes surrounding him such as the Vietnam war and the fight for Black liberation through expression.
With Rick James’s legacy being intertwined with pop culture and the funk genre his larger than life persona always had the potential to be overshadowed by his larger than life image even after his death. His personal struggles were analyzed by the public and inspired comedy skits, speeches, and more. The documentary in many ways brings viewers back to Rick James the artist and the human and pulls them away from the persona.
With Ty James, Rick’s daughter, and Sascha Jenkins working together, audiences are able to view the full image of who Rick was, what he loved, and the people that were a part of his life. The documentary explores Rick’s childhood in Buffalo, his activism, his determination, and includes interviews from his daughter Ty, his peers, and more.