“Becoming,” a documentary based on Michelle Obama’s biography, is coming to Netflix on May 6
With all of the political turmoil building up due to the government’s reaction to the COVID-19 pandemic as well as the upcoming election, one thing is clear: what the world needs now is a little more of Michelle Obama. Luckily, Netflix — the studio who recently brought us the pandemic’s most binge-worthy guilty pleasure, Tiger King, is here to save the day once again. On Monday, the streaming service revealed that a documentary based on the former First Lady’s book Becoming will be dropping on May 6.
“Becoming is an intimate look into the life of former First Lady Michelle Obama during a moment of profound change, not only for her personally but for the country she and her husband served over eight impactful years in the White House. The film offers a rare and up-close look at her life, taking viewers behind the scenes as she embarks on a 34-city tour that highlights the power of community to bridge our divides and the spirit of connection that comes when we openly and honestly share our stories,” Netflix revealed in a press release Monday morning.
It also included a note from Obama herself, discussing not only what to expect in the Nadia Hallgren-directed film, but also some words of hope for us during the tumultuous state of the world.
“Those months I spent traveling — meeting and connecting with people in cities across the globe — drove home the idea that what we share in common is deep and real and can’t be messed with. In groups large and small, young and old, unique and united, we came together and shared stories, filling those spaces with our joys, worries, and dreams. We processed the past and imagined a better future. In talking about the idea of ‘becoming,’ many of us dared to say our hopes out loud,” she writes.
She also mentions the current health crisis sweeping the nation, managing to offer a calming voice during a tumultuous time.
“I treasure the memories and that sense of connection now more than ever, as we struggle together to weather this pandemic, as we care for our loved ones, tend to our communities, and try to keep up with work and school while coping with huge amounts of loss, confusion, and uncertainty,” she continued. “It’s hard these days to feel grounded or hopeful, but I hope that like me, you’ll find joy and a bit of respite in what Nadia has made.”
She also reminds us that she is “a hugger,” and that the pandemic has complicated her choice of affection.
“My whole life, I’ve seen it as the most natural and equalizing gesture one human can make toward another — the easiest way of saying, ‘I’m here for you.’ And this is one of the toughest parts of our new reality: Things that once felt simple — going to see a friend, sitting with someone who is hurting, embracing someone new — are now not simple at all.”
And even though she may not be living in the White House anymore, she is still here for us.
“But I’m here for you. And I know you are here for one another. Even as we can no longer safely gather or feed off the energy of groups, even as many of us are living with grief, loneliness, and fear, we need to stay open and able to put ourselves in other people’s shoes. Empathy is our lifeline here. It’s what will get us to the other side. Let’s use it to redirect our attention toward what matters most, reconsider our priorities, and find ways to better remake the world in the image of our hopes,” Obama says.
“Even in hard times, maybe especially in hard times, our stories help cement our values and strengthen our connections. Sharing them shows us the way forward. I love and miss you all.”
Obama is clearly just as excited as us for the May 6 premiere of Becoming, tweeting about the exciting media moment following the official announcement.