BBC Two developing Joe Exotic documentary

LOS ANGELES: Joseph Maldonado-Passage, who rose to prominence as Joe Exotic of the hit Netflix series “Tiger King”, is now set to be the subject of a new feature-length documentary at BBC Two.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, BAFTA-winning presenter-journalist Louis Theroux will explore how the zookeeper became a media phenomenon after the 2020 true-crime series.

Exotic has been found guilty of a murder-for-hire plot and multiple animal cruelty charges.

His popularity found him a well-funded campaign team who were attempting to win him a presidential pardon.

The documentary has the working title “Louis Theroux: The Cult of Joe Exotic” and Theroux said this story is “quintessentially American” stories, taking place in the heartland of Oklahoma, with a cast of characters almost too colourful and larger-than-life to be believed.

Interestingly, Theroux first met Exotic whilst making his documentary “America’s Most Dangerous Pets” a decade ago.

“I spent eight or nine days filming at the park back in 2011, over the course of three separate visits. I’d forgotten how much we shot until I went back into the footage during the lockdown.”

“It’s extraordinary how much was there. Since then the story just got stranger and bigger, and in going back at the end of last year I uncovered a real-life drama that took me in directions I never could have expected,” he said.

Clare Sillery, the BBC’s head of commissioning, documentaries, history and religion, said the upcoming special will be full to the brim with never-before-seen footage and brand new interviews with those on all sides of the Joe Exotic story.

“In this follow-up to Louis’ revelatory first-look at the life of Joe Exotic in ‘America’s Most Dangerous Pets’, viewers will be taken even more deeply into the weird world of one of America’s most notorious figures,” Sillery added.

Meanwhile, Nicolas Cage is set to play Exotic in an upcoming CBS drama series picked up by Amazon Studios.