The film, under the working title Lucy & Desi, will explore the rise of comedian icon Lucille Ball, her relationship with Desi Arnaz, and how their groundbreaking sitcom I Love Lucy forever changed Hollywood, cementing her legacy long after her death in 1989.
Poehler, making her documentary feature directorial debut with the film, will also be producing it under her Paper Kite production company. Imagine and White Horse are partnering with Ball and Arnaz’s estate to create the film with first-person narratives, archival film and still photos.
“I am so excited to work with Imagine Docs to help present the incredible life and work of the brave and hilarious Lucille Ball and her husband Desi Arnaz,” Poehler said in a statement.
Imagine Documentaries’ president and producer Justin Wilkes added: “As television’s long-reigning ‘First Family’, Lucy and Desi blazed a revolutionary trail through the cultural landscape that laid the groundwork for so much of the entertainment industry as we now know it. They created so many television firsts — not only in their portrayal of a multi-ethnic marriage or Lucy’s on-air pregnancy but as the first woman to head a studio and the creators of television syndication. It’s such an incredibly rich, inspiring and entertaining story and we’re honored to bring it to the screen.”