BBC commissions new feature on Joe Exotic

BBC’s documentary filmmaker, Louis Theroux is at it again, and this time he’s digging deeper into the life of the one and only—Joe Exotic.

The Tiger King, Joe Exotic
© Getty Images
The Tiger King, Joe Exotic

If you thought you knew everything about Joseph Maldonado-Passaga, aka Joe Exotic, think again. BBC Two has commissioned a new 90-minute special, calledLouis Theroux: The Cult of Joe Exotic.

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Theroux’s first encounter with Joe Exotic

Last year,Netflix’s Tiger King rocked the world, and Joe Exotic was on everybody’s mind. But, that was not the first documentary to star the eccentric animal lover. 10 years ago, Louis Theroux released his documentary called, America’s Most Dangerous Pets, and that’s when he met Exotic for the first time. His latest venture will be a sequel to his original documentary, and since 2011, the stories have apparently gotten ten times wilder.

Theroux said:

I’d forgotten how much we shot until I went back into the footage during lockdown. It’s extraordinary how much was there. Since then the story just got stranger and bigger, and in going back at the end of last year I uncovered a real-life drama that took me in directions I never could have expected.

The new documentary will feature familiar faces, including Exotic’s closest confidants and his nemesis, Carole Baskin.

Exploring the dark world of Joe Exotic

In 2018, Exotic was arrested on several charges of animal abuse, as well as an attempted murder-for-hire plot on his arch enemy, Carole Baskin. He has served two years of his 22-year sentence and Theroux’s documentary will dive deeper into the dark world of Joe Exotic.

Clare Sillery, BBC’s Head of Commissioning, Documentaries, History and Religion added:

In this follow-up to Louis’ revelatory first-look at the life of Joe Exotic in America’s Most Dangerous Pets, viewers will be taken even more deeply into the weird world of one of America’s most notorious figures. This feature-length special will be full to the brim with never-before-seen footage and brand new interviews with those on all sides of the Joe Exotic story.

Theroux told Association Press that he would like people to look beyond the fame, and see both Joe Exotic and Carole Baskins as ‘real people, who are involved in real crimes.’ He said:

So what I’ve tried to do with this new documentary is try and present versions of people that are close to the truth and a bit less caricature-ish.
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