The story of Fyre Festival, the multi-sensory luxury influencer festival on an island in The Exumas which became a once-in-a-lifetime surprise survivalist cosplay disaster, is almost too much for any one documentary to cover. Or at least, that's what the major streaming networks are hoping you think, since there are multiple Fyre docs that have now been made. Today, Hulu surprise released their take, FYRE FRAUD, just days before Netflix's own Fyre doc will be released. Just like I always say, you gotta fight Fyre with Fyre.
Hulu surprise dropping its Fyre Fest documentary today, mere days before Netflix was set to drop its own, is the level of aggressive pettiness I'm here for pic.twitter.com/hROF7C6HqV
— Caroline Darya Framke (@carolineframke) January 14, 2019
It’s as though Hulu said let’s just do it and be legends. https://t.co/LAfFWapXlQ
— Rob Mitchum (@robmitchum) January 14, 2019
You can check out the trailer for FYRE FRAUD below.
It was executive produced and directed by documentarians Julia Willoughby Nason and Jenner Furst, who both worked on TIME: The Kalief Browder Story and Rest in Power: The Trayvon Martin Story. In a press release, they said "this dark comedy is a cautionary tale for a generation."
Billy McFarland offers us a window into the mind of a con artist, the insidious charm of the fraudster and how they can capture our imaginations, our investment, and our votes in the age of Trump. McFarland’s staggering ambition metastasized in a petri dish of late-stage capitalism, corporate greed, and predatory branding, all weaponized by our fear of missing out.
Our aim was to set the stage for a strange journey into the moral abyss of our digital age, going beyond the meme to show an ecosystem of enablers, driven by profit and willing to look the other way, for their own gain.
We draw on countless cultural references, on true crime tension, and on humor - but we did not intend to create a toothless comedy about the Fyre Festival. We hope this film can pierce our collective apathy and disrupt our own millennial peers, if only for an instant - to look at these stories for what they truly are, and to halt this algorithm before it devours us whole.
We spoke to Furst way back in June when production was still happening on the doc. The biggest thing was they got to sit down with Billy McFarland for eight hours worth of interviews before he was sentenced to six years in prison. He noted that the crux of the doc is that you can't learn morality on the Internet, and "how there is a vacant quality to this whole thing. There is an absence of ethics and morality, and it's generational. And I think it's a wakeup call and we have to examine how these aspects of our culture are corroding our sense of reality and our sense of morality."
Netflix's documentary, FYRE: The Greatest Party That Never Happened, will be released on January 18th. Their film was directed by Chris Smith, who was behind the doc Jim & Andy: The Great Beyond; it is described as giving "a first-hand look into disastrous crash of Fyre as told by the organizers themselves." Check out the trailer below.
As if that all wasn't enough, there is also a third Fyre Fest doc coming later this year from MTV!