Demi Lovato – “Simply Complicated” Documentary

Demi Lovato covers a lot of ground in her new documentary, Simply Complicated, which was released Tuesday (Oct. 17) on YouTube.

From her early childhood to her big break in Disney’s Camp Rock, to fighting life- and career-threatening battles with a variety of disorders to the making of her newest album, Tell Me You Love Me, the singer tells Billboard the film provided an opportunity to “control the narrative” around her life and marked an important milestone as she turned 25 this summer and last month released arguably her best album to date. In that spirit, throughout Simply Complicated, Lovato delves into deeply personal subject matter, including an abusive relationship with her biological father, her struggles with addiction, bi-polar disorder and anorexia, bulimia and cutting.

As much as Simply Complicated tells the story of Lovato’s past, it retains a foot firmly set in the present. The doc chronicles Lovato’s recording of Tell Me You Love Me, along with more personal fare such as the purchase of her first house, her breakup with Wilmer Valderrama last year and her reentry into the single world via the Raya dating app.

Lovato spoke with Billboard ahead of Simply Complicated’s release to discuss the documentary’s relationship with her latest album, why she felt she needed to share such personal subject matter, and how her imperfections are what make her a perfect role model.

Simply Complicated really explores a lot of the subjects you address on your new album, Tell Me You Love Me — did you see the album as a blueprint for the doc, or how did they influence each other?

I feel like what’s incredible about this opportunity to make this documentary was you got to see the making of the album and you got to see a glimpse into what it’s like to create a body of work that I’m so passionate about. So it definitely correlates with one another — I don’t know if one’s necessarily a blueprint to the other, but it’s something that I get to share with my fans and that’s what is exciting to me. And I touch on a lot of topics in the documentary and they kind of explain some of the songs, which is great.

Why was the doc something you felt like you needed to make?

I wanted to share this experience with my fans. I turned 25 this year, It’s a quarter of a century, it’s an important year to me. The making of this album was very important, and I’ve gone through a lot of changes. I’ve gone through a couple breakups and I went through a lot in my past, so being able to talk about those things and explain them to my fans is fulfilling — and it’s kind of relieving.

So then was there an aspect of wanting to control the narrative?

Yes, it’s nice to be able to control the narrative because a lot of times you get asked questions in interviews and sometimes, some magazines or reporters are kind of like fighting for bits. I get to lay everything out on the line myself [in the doc], which feels good.

There’s a lot of intense, personal subjects you go into. Was there anything that you needed to trim back when you were going through edits?

There actually wasn’t anything that I took out of the documentary because it was too personal. Everything that’s in there I’m very, very honest about. There are things in my life that I choose to keep to myself, but there wasn’t anything like that in the documentary.











Nancy Danae

October 17th, 2017

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