It has been years in the making, and finally Formula One champion Michael Schumacher’s family are ready to tell the story of their beloved husband and father in an exclusive Netflix documentary this month.
Simply titled Schumacher, the much-anticipated film will feature rare interviews and previously undisclosed archival footage, charting the German’s rise from his father’s karting track at Kerpen to becoming F1’s most successful driver, claiming 91 victories and seven world championships with Benetton and Ferrari.
“There was no one like him. What he achieved was absolutely incredible,” his brother and fellow F1 driver Ralf says.
The racing world was devastated in 2013 when Schumacher, 52, suffered a near-fatal brain injury while skiing in the French Alps.
He spent months in an induced coma before being moved from hospital to a rehabilitation clinic in June 2014.
He has continued to be cared for by a team of 10 experts at his $94 million home on the banks of Lake Geneva in Switzerland.
30 years ago today, Michael Schumacher competed in his very first Formula 1 race in Spa, Belgium, launching his legendary motorsport career. SCHUMACHER, from 15 September, only on Netflix! pic.twitter.com/0XsEdlxYSC
— Netflix UK & Ireland (@NetflixUK) August 25, 2021
Details of his condition have been scarce and even a short family statement on his 50th birthday shed little light on his condition: “You can be sure that he is in the very best of hands and that we are doing everything humanly possible to help him”.
“Please understand if we are following Michael’s wishes and keeping such a sensitive subject as health, as it has always been, in privacy.”
His parents, his children Gina-Maria and Mick (who races for the Haas F1 team), and Corinna Schumacher, are now ready to tell his story.
“I just felt that he is somebody special,” says Corinna, who has shared videos of her wedding day dancing with her husband, and dozens of photos of his life away from motor sport.
Scuba diving, on a skidoo in the snow, parachuting, and laughing with his young children are cherished images the world finally gets to see.
“In his quest for perfection, he spared neither himself nor his team, driving them to the greatest successes. He is admired all over the world for his leadership qualities,” his long-time manager Sabine Kehm says.
“He found the strength for this task and the balance to recharge at home, with his family, whom he loves idolatrously. In order to preserve his private sphere as a source of strength, he has always rigorously and consistently separated his private from his public life.”
“This film tells of both worlds. It is his family’s gift to their beloved husband and father.”
Schumacher premieres on Netflix on September 15.
Streaming this September
Vigil – Binge, from August 30
The moment Suranne Jones (Gentleman Jack, Doctor Foster) – who plays Scottish detective Amy Silva – is lowered into a nuclear submarine from a British Navy helicopter to investigate the death of a crew member, you get a sense things are going to get worse.
With her trusty offsider Rose Leslie (Game Of Thrones) as fellow detective Kirsten Longacre, the pair lead a thrilling seat-of-your pants investigation on land and at sea into a conspiracy that goes to the very heart of Britain’s national security.
Only Murders in the Building – Disney+, from August 31
When veteran Hollywood comedic greats team up – I’m talking long-time collaborators Steve Martin and Martin Short – its a recipe for a showstopper series.
Disney says this one follows three strangers – Selena Gomez strikes a delightful balance – who share an obsession with true crime and suddenly find themselves wrapped up in one.
“When a grisly death occurs inside their exclusive Upper West Side apartment building, the trio suspect murder and employ their precise knowledge of true crime to investigate the truth”.
I wonder if the killer lives there? We see a cameo of rock legend Sting from The Police opening a door!
Countdown: Inspiration4 Mission to Space – Netflix, from September 6
Four civilians are about to embark on the trip of a lifetime.
Yes, they’ve been handpicked by a billionaire entrepreneur to orbit space for three days, and Netflix is going along for the ride.
Videographers will capture in “near real time” their adventures from preparing to launch, to floating in their SpaceX spaceship, to return to Earth.
Happier than Ever: A Love Letter to Los Angeles – Disney+ September 3
Described as a “cinematic concert experience”, Billie Eilish’s 89 million Instagram fans will get to see her perform every song from her new album, Happier Than Ever, from the stage of the Hollywood Bowl.
What a treat.
“The intimate performances will be interspersed with animated sequences, “taking viewers on a dream-like journey through Billie’s home town of Los Angeles and its most iconic backdrops,” according to Disney.
Untold: Breaking Point – Netflix, from September 7
Sadly, its the final in the five-part docuseries from the creators of Wild Wild Country (documentary about controversial Indian guru Bhagwan Shree Rajneesh). Breaking Point tells the story of Mardy Fish as he rose to be the No.1-ranked American male tennis player while facing mental health challenges that changed his life on and off the court.
LuLaRich – Amazon Prime Video, from September 10
LuLaRich is a four-part docuseries that chronicles the unraveling of LuLaRoe. Known for their buttery-soft leggings, the infamous multilevel-marketing company went viral promising young mothers a work-from-home salvation. “Through exclusive interviews, this series unveils how it all went wrong in a spectacularly weird – and comedic – fashion,” says Amazon.
Australia Uncovered: Strong Female Lead – SBS On Demand, from September 12
A Northern Pictures production, Strong Female Lead forms part of SBS’s Australia Uncovered documentary strand, and explores the gender politics during Julia Gillard’s term as Australia’s first and still only female Prime Minister. No doubt Ms Gillard’s famous misogynist speech directed at former PM Tony Abbott in the House of Reps will take centre stage.
Inside Central Station – SBS On Demand, from September 12
I’m hooked already because it’s narrated by Shane Jacobson (Kenny, Oddball). SBS paints a perfect storm for the first of the 10-part documentary series: “A massive lightning strike takes out a signal box bringing trains to a standstill, stranding thousands of passengers. A woman faints into the path of an oncoming train. A once-in-a-generation rain event derails a heritage train and much of the rail network”.
New Amsterdam (Season 4) – Stan, from September 22
Medical dramas are always a hit if done well, and New Amsterdam is no exception. After a successful three seasons, the show picks up the stories of the doctors, and what happened to them.
BMF – Stan, from September 26
Inspired by true events, BMF is the story of how two brothers rose from the decaying streets of south-west Detroit in the late 1980s and gave birth to a drug and money-laundering empire known as the Black Mafia Family.