J Balvin is one of the most famous Latin artists in the world and now he’s giving fans a peek behind the scenes. His new documentary, The Boy From Medellín, is set to premiere on Amazon Prime Video May 7th and it follows him in the days ahead of his homecoming concert at the Estadio Atanasio Girardot in Medellín, Colombia, in December 2019. J Balvin is a four-time Latin Grammy winner and one of the most-streamed artists worldwide with more than 40 billion global streams. However, as the title implies, this story is also about his roots and his homeland amid the upheaval that occurred in the midst of his concert. At that time a number of protests erupted throughout Colombia against corruption, police brutality, and certain strict measures placed by Colombia’s right-wing President Iván Duque.
It’s about the megastar J Balvin and it’s also about José Álvaro Osorio Balvín and that dichotomy makes it as much a coming of age story as it is a concert doc, director/producer Matthew Heineman said in a press release. “There’s a sequence in the film where he talks about that conflict between J Balvin, this public persona, and the real José–that’s at the heart of what he struggles with to some degree. I think that interplay between who he wants to be as an artist, as a professional, and who he is as a person, is very relatable, it’s very human.”
In 2019 he made history as the first Latin artist to headline the Lollapalooza Music Festival and the first Reggaeton artist to perform on Saturday Night Live. In June of that year, he collaborated with Latin phenom and trap star Bad Bunny for their 8-track album Oasis and performed a sold-out show with 50,000 in Medellín, achieving a lifelong dream he’d had. Despite the professional highs, that month he also opened up about the personal lows he’d been struggling with. He tweeted that after two months of battling with anxiety and depression he finally “felt the sky again”. These are some of the struggles showcased in the film adjacent to the upheaval in his beloved Colombia.
“I thought it was going to be more like a ‘star’ story, but because of the situations that happened when we landed in Medellín, everything changed. And that’s life. Maybe Matthew had an idea but when he got to Colombia everything changed for him too. It became something more real and deep,” Balvin said in a press release.
Watch The Boy From Medellín on Amazon Prime Video May 7th.