Amy Schumer is known for many things. Being filtered is not one of them. But the actress, writer, and comedian is giving audiences the most unfiltered look into her life yet with Expecting Amy. The upcoming three-part HBO Max documentary series goes behind-the-scenes of Schumer’s difficult pregnancy and the creative process behind her subsequent comedy special, pulling back the curtain on her private life and Hollywood career.
While the promise of a behind-the-scenes look at Schumer’s creative process is intriguing, I’m mostly invested in this one because of how little honest representation there is for difficult pregnancies in media. While pregnancy, births, and miscarriages have long been used for heightened storytelling in melodrama, horror, and tentpole franchises alike, the intimate details and real-life complications of reproductive health are often shrouded in mystery — a fact that’s genuinely concerning when you consider how far we have to go in the protections, investments, and governances surrounding that health. Regardless of how you feel about Schumer’s comedy career (which has fielded much criticism over the years, sometimes shallow but often valid,) there’s a lot of value in a piece that offers candid insight into the health challenges women face, even those with the wealth and privilege to access first-rate health care.
And on top of that, the doc has a very exciting voice behind the camera. Directed and edited by Alexander Hammer, the filmmaker who worked with Beyoncé on Lemonade and Homecoming, Expecting Amy follows Schumer from hospitalizations to live performances and everything in between. HBO Max will premiere all three episodes on Thursday, July 9. Watch the trailer below.
Here’s the official description for Expecting Amy:
Expecting Amy is an unfiltered three-part documentary that shows the struggle, strength and ambition that has made Amy Schumer one of the singular comic voices of all time. It takes viewers behind-the-scenes as Schumer battles through an extraordinarily difficult pregnancy while documenting the formation of a comedy special. Schumer continues touring to prepare for the taping in Chicago that she isn’t sure she will be able to execute. It focuses on pulling the curtain completely back on her marriage to husband Chris Fischer, and the journey to his diagnosis on the autism spectrum. From hospitalizations to going out in front of a crowd of thousands, to quiet moments at home with her family, Schumer shares it all. Beginning the day she found out she was pregnant, through the birth of her child, she showcases her incredible journey on the road, revealing the challenges of pregnancy, marriage and the execution of creating a stand-up special. Expecting Amy offers a hilarious and raw 360-degree look at this new stage of her life. It’s like Jerry Seinfeld’s movie “Comedian,” if he had been pregnant. With her family and friends along for the ride to support her and keep her sane and balanced, she does it all with perseverance, heart and the priceless sense of humor she’s known for.