Amy Poehler directs her celebrated documentary Lucy and Desi (2022). Amazon Prime describes the feature documentary as “[exploring] the unlikely partnership and enduring legacy of one of the most prolific power couples in entertainment history.” Then, the description adds that “Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz risked everything to be together.”
The documentary about Lucille Ball and Desi Arnaz received glowing critical reviews. It scored six Emmy nominations in multiple categories. It earned a nomination for outstanding nonfiction directing. Lucy and Desi also received nods for outstanding nonfiction writing and best documentary. The film marks Poehler’s first documentary as director. However, Amy Poehler is better known for her acting chops. Fans recognize Poehler from her time as Leslie Knope in NBC’s Parks and Recreation. Poehler was also an SNL cast member.
However, Lucy and Desi faces stiff competition in the most coveted category. The Best Documentary category contains other acclaimed documentaries.
Other nominees include Controlling Britney Spears and George Carlin’s American Dream. The Tinder Swindler and We Feed People also earned nods.
Clearly, the nominations hold a diverse range of networks. FX, HBO/HBO Max, Prime Video, Netflix, and Disney + produced the docs, respectively.
Poehler’s film runs for 102 minutes. It delves into the personal lives of the iconic duo. The documentary reveals unknown parts of their lives, both within and outside the industry. Lucy and Desi covers Ball’s illustrious career from adored actress to studio head. The film debuted at the Sundance Film Festival. It released to Amazon Prime Video this past March.
‘Lucy and Desi’ Gets Rave Reviews
Additionally, established directors tout Poehler’s direction. Her film earned nominations in the directing category along with other heavyweights. Other directors nominated include Andrew Rossi for The Andy Warhol Diaries and Juddy Apatow for George Carlin’s American Dream. Lord of the Rings director Peter Jackson earned a nod for The Beatles: Get Back.
Imagine Documentaries and White Horse Pictures co-produced the feature. White Horse Pictures’ Nigel Sinclair and Jeanne Elfant Festa serve as producers on the project. For the third year in a row, White Horse received Emmy nominations for Outstanding Documentary or Nonfiction Special. The company won for The Apollo in 2020 and were again nominated in 2021 for The Bee Gees: How Can You Mend a Broken Heart.
Justin Wilkes, studio co-head of Imagine, spoke to Amy’s gifted directing.
“It’s an absolute reflection of how hard Amy worked on this film and how committed she was to it. She’s obviously an incredible storyteller.” Wilkes said. “She was able to apply all of those skills magnificently to this Lucy and Desi. It’s great to see that that branch accepted her as one of their own and celebrated her.”
Wilkes said that Poehler used her experience on this project. “She’s directed other projects and she’s written other projects,” he said.
Wilkes also added his thoughts on the show’s audience. Although it’s a film, Wilkes believes the project works for a television audience.
“Everybody felt that the audience for this film was ultimately a television audience,” he said. Next, he added, “just given who it was about.” Wilkes also complimented the studio’s other film: We Feed People. Howver, that film received two nods compared to Lucy and Desi‘s six.
Lucy and Desi streams on Amazon Prime Video. Also, the film currently holds a 94% on Rotten Tomatoes.