New Amy Winehouse documentary isn’t about a ‘trainwreck’

Amy Winehouse performs at the launch party of City Burlesque on October 7, 2010 in London, England.

Amy Winehouse performs at the launch party of City Burlesque on October 7, 2010 in London, England.

Photo by Samir Hussein/Getty Images

For much of her career and since her tragic death at age 27, most of what we’ve known about Amy Winehouse came from the pages of the tabloids. Amy, the new documentary about the musician, gives us a devastatingly sad look into Winehouse’s personal life.

Director Asif Kapadia started work on the film admittingly not knowing much about Winehouse. But Winehouse’s friend and manager Nick Shymansky — who had never before spoken publicly about her — grew to trust Kapadia.

“There’s a side to Amy that just hasn’t been handled very well by the wider media, by the tabloids, by the Internet, Twitter, people’s opinions — and I’d really like that side of Amy to come through,” Shymansky told Larry Flick this week on OutQ‘s The Morning Jolt.

“I used to have, for a time, a very negative opinion about Amy,” Flick said. “Watching the movie helped me understand — as the son of an alcoholic — Amy’s story in a way that was heartbreaking.”

Kapadia agreed that the film is about more than one tragic story.

“[The movie is] about her, but more and more as we were getting deeper into the story it became about ‘us.’ It’s about all of us dealing with our own issues. Everyone has someone in their family that has some kind of issue that we’ve had to manage growing up or we might have that issue. And that somehow became the power of why [the movie] became important … I just wanted to make everyone think a bit more.”

And hopefully viewers will walk away with a different image of Winehouse.

“Now people know how funny, amazing, brilliant, witty, beautiful she was. They feel they can grieve in public … In the U.S. particularly they summed her up in one word: Trainwreck. And she was so much more than that.”

Hear the entire interview:

 

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