“Lorena,” a four-part documentary series from Amazon Studios, wants the world to see Lorena Bobbitt in a different light.
In 1993, the 24-year-old woman became a tabloid fixture and late-night punchline for cutting off her husband’s penis with a knife. Although she alleged that she was raped and abused by her partner John Wayne Bobbitt, some of those details got buried in the sensationalistic media coverage.
With new interviews interspersed with old TV footage, “Lorena” director Joshua Rofe refocuses on Lorena Bobbitt’s life as a victim of domestic abuse. The docuseries, which premieres this week at the Sundance Film Festival, argues that Bobbitt was re-victimized by the sexist coverage of her case. In one particularly disturbing clip, Howard Stern attacks Bobbitt’s looks to question the accuracy of her testimony at trial. (In 1994, a jury found her not guilty due to temporary insanity.)
Bobbitt and Rofe spoke to Variety about their project and why Bobbitt’s story is more timely than ever in the Me Too era. The docuseries, which was produced by Jordan Peele, airs on Feb. 15.