Culture / TV

An Abercrombie & Fitch documentary is coming to Netflix, unpacking the brand’s rise and fall

Abercrombie & Fitch are getting the Netflix treatment, with a new documentary about the high street brand in the works with the streaming giant. Set to explore the height of its popularity and alleged discriminatory practices, White Hot: The Rise & Fall of Abercrombie & Fitch is the latest in a string of popular documentaries produced by Netflix.

What is the Abercrombie & Fitch Netflix documentary about?

The documentary will dissect the peak of the brand in the late 1990s through to the early 2000s, attributable to its “all-American” aesthetics and branding. Yet, in the years since its popularity peaked, there has been much controversy associated with the brand including exclusionary marketing and discriminatory practices. This includes the retailer’s lawsuit against American eagle, claiming its competitor had plagiarised certain designs.

Alongside this, in the early 2000s the company faced a class-action suit for allegations of discrimination against job applicants of colour, with managers of stores allegedly ordered to deny applicants who “didn’t fit a certain look.”

As summarised by Netflix, Abercrombie & Fitch “conquered malls in the late ‘90s and early ‘00s with gorgeous models, pulsing dance beats, and a fierce scent. But while the brand was running white hot its popular ‘all-American’ image began burning out as controversy came to light surrounding its exclusionary marketing and discriminatory hiring.’

Alison Klayman is charged with directing the film, with her other credits including Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry, Take Yur Pills and Jagged, centring on the life of Alanis Morissette. Rival streaming service Hulu is also working on another clothing label-centric documentary, focussing on Von Dutch, so perhaps this is a sign we can expect further series’ exploring similar brands.

When will the documentary be available to stream in Australia?

White Hot: The Rise & Fall of Abercrombie & Fitch is set to premiere on Netflix on April 19.

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