Documentarian and nerdy thirst trap Louis Theroux is revisiting a story he covered way before Netflix shot it into the stratosphere – Tiger King’s Joe Exotic.

The pair met 10 years ago, as part of Louis’ documentary America’s Most Dangerous Pets.

This time around, Louis Theroux: The Cult of Joe Exotic will take a look back at the original doco and go through masses of unseen footage.

This, plus chatting to old friends and Joe’s prison support team. Theroux will attempt to get to the bottom of who Joe Exotic really is.

“This is one of those quintessentially American stories, taking place in the heartland of Oklahoma, with a cast of characters almost too colourful and larger-than-life to be believed,” Theroux explained.

“I spent eight or nine days filming at the park back in 2011, over the course of three separate visits. I’d forgotten how much we shot until I went back into the footage during lockdown. It’s extraordinary how much was there.”

“Since then the story just got stranger and bigger, and in going back at the end of last year I uncovered a real-life drama that took me in directions I never could have expected.”


Joe Exotic is currently in prison after he was found guilty of two counts of murder-for-hire, eight counts of tampering and falsifying wildlife records, plus nine counts of killing tigers. He was sentenced to 22 years.

More recently, Exotic appealed to Donald Trump to pardon him to no avail.

He claims he was “too gay” to be pardoned.

This isn’t the only Joe Exotic project on the way, either. Nicolas Cage is to play him in a new Amazon series, NBC is planning its own drama, and there may yet be a Tiger King season 2 on Netflix.

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