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Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds Doc BRIGHT LIGHTS Will Release After New Years

Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds Doc BRIGHT LIGHTS Will Release After New Years

Alongside the many tremendous narrative films I was lucky to catch at this year’s New York Film Festival was one particularly charming, if not a bit shaggy, documentary feature: Bright Lights: Starring Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds, an up-close-and-personal look at the relationship between one of the most beloved mother-daughter couplets in show business. Though it will be impossible to watch Bright Lights without the company of grief in the wake of both Fisher and Reynolds‘ passing this week, it’s still a viewing experience in which any fan of nerd icon Fisher or classic Hollywood legend Reynolds–or both!–will find rewards. To all those intending to check out the picture, HBO has announced (via IndieWire) that it will air its debut broadcast of Bright Lights on January 7th.

The film, co-directed by Alexis Bloom (producer of We Steal Secrets: The Story of WikiLeaks) and Fisher Stevens (the actor and filmmaker best known for his starring role in the Short Circuit movies), tampers in the personal histories of Fisher and Reynolds, focusing in large part on the former’s history with drug abuse, mental illness, and the emotional disharmony resultant from her parents’ split and father’s estrangement. On top of this, we get a pretty keen understanding as to how a childhood in the limelight impacted Fisher, both for better and worse.

But even though Bright Lights deals in some heavy material, it never feels hard to watch, thanks to the remarkably close relationship that daughter and mother shared at the time of production. Living next door to one another and spending every day together, they made for a bona fide comedy team; the marriage of Reynolds’ old fashioned razzle-dazzle and Fisher’s cantankerous, foul-mouthed charm works wonders on camera, especially unedited.

Again, Bright Lights won’t be the same joyful an experience as those at NYFF was fortunate enough to get this past fall, but the film will no doubt affirm just how integral each woman was to the other’s life. If you’re up for the watch, tune into HBO on Jan. 7. If you need a bit more time before visiting this piece (understandably), make sure to keep it resting safely on your DVR for whenever you’re ready.

Image: HBO

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