Lady Boss: The Jackie Collins Story, a documentary from director Laura Fairrie, tells the story of the remarkable success of writer Jackie Collins. With material from her childhood on up, we see how the writer turned herself into a media mogul and a worldwide phenomena. Watch the film on Netflix.
Lady Boss: The Jackie Collins Story starts with childhood in England. Jackie’s naturally beautiful older sister Joan Collins was her ally and her enemy all her life. Jackie followed Joan to Hollywood where she hung out with the movie stars who hung out with Joan. Jackie tried to make it in movies but was told she wasn’t beautiful enough.
So she made herself beautiful. Plastic surgery was a success builder for her.
She married 3 times. Two of the husbands were abusive. The second one found some of her unfinished novels and encouraged her to finish them. He saw her potential and encouraged her. That changed everything in her life.
Her gift was taking from the lives of the people around her, and from her own life, and turning those stories into fictionalized, glamorous adventures. Her women were all strong. Her women were all sexually liberated. Her women were always the main character of the story. From her first book onward, she was a best seller. Her stories were full of sex and glitz.
Women loved her books because they encouraged women to express themselves sexually with the same passion as men. The books told women they could do anything.
People thought she was a terrible writer.
People read her every word.
I don’t remember specifically reading a Jackie Collins book, but I’m sure I must have. You could hardly live through the decades I’ve lived through and not read Jackie Collins.
The documentary contained lot of personal photos and videos. Her three daughters, her sister, her friends, her editors and business partners all agreed to talk about her on camera. Many of her diary entries and handwritten novels were shown in her loopy, eccentric handwriting. There were interviews and TV clips.
Jackie Collins was a brand. A platform. An influencer. Her persona never cracked in public. She was unflappable in public. In private her life was as difficult as everyone else’s.
Whatever you might think of Jackie Collins literary talent, you have to give her credit for finding her niche and building it into an empire. I wonder what she would have done with Instagram.
Here’s the trailer.
Are you interested in this documentary?