“White Hot: The Rise and Fall of Abercrombie & Fitch” will debut on Netflix April 19, the streamer has announced.
Directed by Alison Klayman, who helmed the Alanis Morissette documentary “Jagged” last year, “White Hot” explores the rise in popularity of casual wear retail chain Abercrombie & Fitch, which was first founded in the 1800s, during the late ’90s. Under the leadership of CEO Mike Jeffries, the store became known for its sexualized advertising and its emphasis on an “all-American” look –– which, to many, was code for “white.” As the store developed a dominance in the retail world off of its brand, growing criticisms regarding discriminatory hiring and marketing practices eventually engulfed it in scandal.
“Abercrombie & Fitch said, ‘We go after the cool kids’,” One talking head in the documentary narrates. “If they didn’t look a certain way, they didn’t belong on our clothing. Are we exclusionary? Absolutely.”
The trailer shows archival footage and photos of Abercrombie advertisements, combined with current interviews with former employees, executives and models of the brand. The documentary will cover numerous scandals the company has faced, including a 2004 class-action suit that accused the brand of discriminating toward Black, Latino, Asian and female employees and a 2015 lawsuit by a Muslim woman who alleged that she was denied a job at an Abercrombie store due to wearing a head scarf.
Klayman produces “White Hot” with Emmet McDermott and Hayley Pappas. Matt Ippolito, Adam Bardach, John Sloss and Tim Pastore executive produce. Smiley Stevens executive produces and serves as the production designer, while Julia Liu executive produces and serves as director of photography. Colin Jones co-produces.
Watch the full trailer for “White Hot” below.