Trigger warning: The below story contains references to eating disorders, sexual assault, and drug abuse. This content may be triggering for some readers.
Demi Lovato's documentary series, Dancing With the Devil, premiered last week, giving an intimate, eye-opening, and perhaps for the first time, accurate, look at the singer's rocky journey through stardom. The four-part series, directed by Michael D. Ratner and produced by OBB Media, offers commentary on the pressures of fame and shines a light on the singer's past traumas through interviews with Lovato as well as her inner circle, family, and mentors like Elton John and Christina Aguilera. Though the series does not shy away from Lovato's ongoing struggles with sobriety and mental health, it ultimately paints a hopeful picture of the 28-year-old and how she found the strength to regain control of her life and become her happiest, fully actualized self.
The documentary traces Lovato's life and career since her "Tell Me You Love Me World Tour" in 2018—even revealing the lies that were perpetrated in her 2017 YouTube Originals documentary, Simply Complicated. It also examines the circumstances around Lovato's near-fatal overdose in July 2018 (from which she suffered three strokes and a heart attack); how she began abusing drugs like heroin and crack for the first time; her eating disorder; her bipolar misdiagnosis; her strained relationship with her late father; her engagement and subsequent breakup with Max Ehrich; her sexual assault at the age of 15 by an actor and later by her drug dealer; and her sexuality now (she explains that she identifies as queer).
The singer dropped an explosive two-minute trailer in mid-February teasing the many revelations to come in the four-part docuseries. "I crossed a line that I had never crossed," the singer says at one point, referring to her use of heroin and crack in the days leading up to her overdose. Watch the clip below.
When does Dancing With the Devil premiere?
The first two episodes—titled "losing control" and "5 minutes from death"—dropped Tuesday, March 23 at 3 pm ET. The third episode, named "reclaiming power," released on March 30, and the finale dropped April 6.
The description for the third episode reveals that it deals more heavily with Lovato's, sometimes difficult, path to recovery, from her time in rehab to re-entering the public eye through performances at the Grammys and Super Bowl. “You really find out who’s there for you when the world falls out from under your feet,” the singer says in a teaser for the third episode.
The finale, titled "rebirthing," deals most directly with Lovato's decision to break off the engagement with Ehrich, as well as her current relationships with her body and her sexuality. The episode also gives fans a glimpse instead her colorful home and shows her decision to get a dramatic (and beautiful) pixie haircut.
“I’ve had a lot of lives–like my cat, I’m on my ninth life,” she jokes at one point.
How do I watch Dancing With the Devil?
Demi Lovato: Dancing with the Devil can be watched, for free, on the singer's official YouTube channel. (While the main docuseries is free, you can access several deleted scenes and bonus clips with YouTube Premium.)
You can also stream it via the embeds below.
What is Dancing With the Devil… The Art of Starting Over?
Lovato revealed that she's releasing her seventh studio album, titled, Dancing With the Devil...The Art of Starting Over, on April 2 to accompany her new docuseries.
During a live stream, the singer revealed that she wanted the album to share a name with the documentary because of how interconnected both projects are.
"If you listen to it track by track," she said per Variety, "if you follow the track listing, it’s kind of actually like the non-official soundtrack to the documentary. Because it really does follow my life over the past couple of years. When we went through the track listing and kind of mapped out how it kind of coincided with my life’s story, it made sense to add the more emotional stuff in the beginning and then transition into "The Art of Starting Over.'"
On April 2, the singer also dropped the music video for "Dancing With the Devil." The video recreates scenes from the night of her overdose as well as her recovery, including the intense dialysis she received. It ends on a powerful note with Lovato rising from her hospital bed and revealing a "survivor" tattoo across her neck.
The album will have 19 tracks and features collabs with Ariana Grande ("Met Him Last Night" and Noah Cyrus.
Dancing With The Devil The Art Of Starting Over🦋💖🌈 💿 #DWTDTAOSOAlbum out April 2!Pre-save it here: https://t.co/nfMs1VXHjH pic.twitter.com/jqzqAG96htMarch 16, 2021
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As Marie Claire’s Entertainment Director, Neha oversees and executes strategy for all editorial talent bookings and culture coverage across the brand's print and digital entities, including covers, celebrity profiles and features, social takeovers, and video franchises as well as handles talent relations for MC's flagship summit, Power Trip. She's passionate about elevating diverse voices and stories, loves a hot-take, and generally hates reboots. She's worked in media for more than 10 years and her bylines about pop culture, film & tv, and fashion have appeared on Glamour, Vanity Fair, GQ, Allure, Teen Vogue, Brides, and Architectural Digest. She is a graduate of the Columbia School of Journalism.
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