Janet Jackson Participating in Four-Hour Doc for Lifetime and A&E

Janet Jackson
Gabriel Olsen/FilmMagic

Janet Jackson has signed on to participate in an authorized documentary about her life and career, one that will simulcast on Lifetime and A&E in early 2022 — the 40th anniversary year of Jackson's debut album.

The singer, who will serve as an executive producer on the two-part, four-hour project, is said to be offering "unprecedented" access. Jackson is a singular character in contemporary pop culture, known for both a wildly successful music career but also a tumultuous life subject to great public scrutiny. The documentary, tentatively titled Janet, will find her addressing her famous family, including the deaths of brother Michael and father Joseph, her late-in-life motherhood and, perhaps most notably, 2004 Super Bowl appearance with Justin Timberlake.

The latter has again returned to the news cycle, with Timberlake addressing his complicity in Jackson's career downturn after one of her breasts was exposed during their infamous halftime show performance.

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Producers Workerbee have been filming the feature for three years, working with Jackson and given exclusive access to archival footage, unseen home videos and interviews with famous contemporaries. Jackson serves as an executive producer alongside Randy Jackson (no relation) and Workerbee's Rick Murray and A+E Networks' Miranda Bryant. Ben Hirsch serves as director.

News of Janet comes on the occasion of A+E's remote upfront, one that also brought heralded 2500 hours of new programming, including 70 hours of premium documentaries and more than 200 movies. Most significantly, Lifetime inked a two-picture deal with Reba McEntire, while History has greenlit Fight the Power: The Protests That Changed America from Kareem Abdul-Jabbar and Deborah Morales.