On the Record: Russell Simmons Controversial Docu to HBO Max

After the Oprah Winfrey-related controversy and a successful Sundance Film Festival premiere, On the Record has secured domestic distribution at HBO Max.

A harrowing look at the struggle of women of color in the #MeToo movement, specifically those accusing hip-hop mogul Russell Simmons of rape and sexual assault, the film was meant to roll out via Winfrey’s Apple TV Plus overall deal.

Her January 10 withdrawal from the project forced the film to fly solo in Park City, where it went in search of a buyer.

UTA Independent Film Group brokered the deal on behalf of filmmakers Amy Ziering and Kirby Dick. This marks HBO Max’s first Sundance acquisition ever (following a splashy deal for Hugh Jackman’s “Bad Education” out of Toronto last September).

“The fierce determination of Drew Dixon and all of the women who bravely chose to share their stories in ‘On the Record’ moved us profoundly,” said Sarah Aubrey, head of original content at HBO Max. “I’ve been impressed with Amy and Kirby’s work over the years covering this complex subject matter, and look forward to this film finding the widest possible audience.”