R.J. Cutler, the director behind Apple TV+’s acclaimed “Billie Eilish: The World’s a Little Blurry” documentary, is setting his sights on Juul for his next project.
Deadline recently reported that Netflix has ordered a documentary series from Cutler based on the “Big Vape: The Incendiary Rise of Juul” book by Time Magazine correspondent Jamie Ducharme. Cutler will direct and executive produce the series, while Darryl Frank and Justin Falvey will executive produce for Amblin Television. Elise Pearlstein and Trevor Smith will executive produce for THis Machine and Ian Orefice and Rebecca Teitel will executive produce for Time Studios.
Per Deadline, the series will chronicle the rise of Juul from a scrappy tech start-up to a multibillion-dollar tobacco company that at one point controlled 72 percent of the market. An episode count and release date are under wraps.
Amazon’s synopsis Ducharme’s book reads:
It began with a smoke break. James Monsees and Adam Bowen were two ambitious graduate students at Stanford, and in between puffs after class they dreamed of a way to quit smoking. Their solution became the Juul, a sleek, modern device that could vaporize nicotine into a conveniently potent dosage. The company they built around that device, Juul Labs, would go on to become a $38 billion dollar company and draw blame for addicting a whole new generation of underage tobacco users. Time magazine reporter Jamie Ducharme follows Monsees and Bowen as they create Juul and, in the process, go from public health visionaries and Silicon Valley wunderkinds to two of the most controversial businessmen in the country.
Netflix’s upcoming Juul documentary will mark Cutler’s first television directing credit since 2012’s “Nashville” soap opera. Cutler’s most recent television credit was on Apple TV+’s 2020 documentary series “Dear…,” which he created and executive produced. Cutler has been prolific in the documentary feature space of late, with the aforementioned “Billie Eilish: The World’s a Little Blurry” coming out shortly after the well-received “Belushi,” the 2020 documentary about actor and musician John Belushi.
Netflix has several other timely documentaries in the works, including a docuseries about the GameStock short squeeze earlier in the year, as well as projects on Kanye West, Prince, and Vince McMahon, among others.