The singer also promises to keep performing live despite her recent announcement that 2016 album AIM was to be her last.
M.I.A has given an update on her long-gestating documentary, claiming the film may take a decade to be finished after the project stalled in 2013 following a dispute that led director Steve Loveridge to claim he’d “rather die” than complete work on it.
“I don’t know what’s happening with my doc,” the AIM songwriter told FACT prior to her hosting a surprise Tommy Genesis show at London’s The Store, 180 The Strand last night, presented by Mercedes-Benz. “I haven’t talked to Steve for years. I did speak to him a few months ago but I think the documentary about me might take another 10 years.”
A teaser trailer for the film starring Kanye West, Julian Assange, Diplo and others emerged online years ago, suggesting a release was imminent. The project however soon fell into development hell, with Loveridge claiming he “couldn’t give a flying fuck” about it in 2013. Rumours circulated in 2015 that the film was finished but since then there’s been no further word on a release.
While work continues to stall on that documentary, M.I.A is looking into other documentary projects, having claimed to be leaving music behind in interviews around her 2016 album AIM. “That was one of the things I was thinking about, making a documentary about what’s happening in the world. Politics are where my interests lie, but the goal posts move so fast that it’s hard to find the documentary subject that doesn’t get messed with so quickly.”
The singer is also considering other projects, including launching a fashion brand and potentially restarting her record label, N.E.E.T Recordings, she tells FACT. “I think every artist gets to a stage in their career where they’re over how the industry works and it’s just like, I don’t need to do that anymore… At the moment, you either have super brands of artists, they’re as big as Coca-Cola, or you have really small artists, and I feel like I’m in the middle somewhere.
“I’m still gonna do shows, here and there. I like that aspect, of meeting my fans and being in front of them,” she says. “It’s a good feeling ‘cos they understand you. I’ve spent x amount of years of my life with fans so it’s like meeting family or something. So live shows will always be part of me. But yeah, it’s a bit of an issue ‘cos you go out and… who I am, as a voice, whatever niche my spot in music was, it’s like, oh there just isn’t anybody else saying that. And it’s not like I quit. I just want to be able to say that in a different way.”
Watch the video for “parting project” single ‘Powa’, released in February, below and head here to rewatch Tommy Genesis’ set from last night’s The Store event.
M.I.A was speaking as part of her involvement in Mercedes-Benz’ 2017 #mbcollective Fashion Story, Chapter 1.