Stalking Pete Doherty

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Published on 12th February 2017 by

In 2004 a privately educated BAFTA winning film maker named Max Carlish, who had fallen on hard times and was stuck gigging as a lecturer, set out to attempt to make a rockumentary on the former Libertines frontman Pete Doherty as he toured with his new band Babyshambles. He found it surprisingly easy to gain access into Doherty’s inner-circle and followed the rocker on the road for several gigs before Doherty abruptly halted any contact and left Carlish without enough footage to produce a film.

Carlish racked up debts attempting to make the film and with no prospect of getting it finished he recouped some of the money by selling footage of Doherty smoking heroin to a tabloid newspaper, an act which led to Doherty allegedly taking revenge on Carlish and being charged with assault and blackmail.

Stalking Pete Doherty (2005) is a Channel 4 documentary which salvages something out of the footage obtained and tells the story of the unsuccessful rockumentary and the subsequent fallout. It actually gives more insight into Max Carlish, his personal struggles and his desperation to complete the film and salvage his film career than it does Doherty, with critics mocking Max Carlish as a ‘documentalist’.

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