ABOUT THE SHOW
Directed by Emmy®-nominee Sacha Jenkins (WU-TANG CLAN: OF MICS AND MEN, BURN, MOTHERF*CKER, BURN!). BITCHIN’ is an intimate yet propulsive look at Rick James, one of rock, funk and R&B’s most legendary and often underappreciated figures. Featuring rare footage of James’ incredible live shows, never-before-seen home video, original interviews with legendary artists, collaborators and friends, and a treasure trove of recorded interviews with James (who died in 2004), the documentary presents a full picture of James’ dramatic rise and fall, focusing in on the “Punk-Funk” music he left behind.
Best remembered as the creator of hits such as “Superfreak,” “Give It To Me Baby” and “Mary Jane,” James blazed new trails in American music and global culture in the ’70s and ’80s as a songwriter, performer and producer, collaborating with luminaries such as Neil Young, Joni Mitchell, The Temptations, Smokey Robinson, Nile Rodgers, Eddie Murphy, Teena Marie, The Mary Jane Girls and M.C. Hammer. BITCHIN’ presents a full and complete picture of James’ life as told by those who knew him. At the center of it all is the “Punk-Funk” that encompassed a unique swath of 20th-century music history from jazz to soul to R&B to rock and eventually, to hip-hop. Friday, August 6 marks the 17th anniversary of James’ death.
BITCHIN’: THE SOUND AND FURY OF RICK JAMES is a Mass Appeal production for SHOWTIME, directed by Jenkins, produced by Steve Rivo, and written by Jenkins, Rivo and Jason Pollard. The film is executive produced by Peter Bittenbender and Jenkins for Mass Appeal, and Douglas Banker and Ty James.