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FORBES | The Kid Laroi’s Documentary Sheds Light On Both His Rise To Fame And Hardships

At the age of just 20, The Kid Laroi has already accomplished more than most musicians will in their entire careers. After developing a huge following online and in his home county of Australia, the pop singer moved to America when he was just a teenager, and it wasn’t long before he found incredible success in this part of the world as well.

Laroi has already scored a No. 1 album—F*ck Love (which was classified as a mixtape, by the way)—as well as a Hot 100 champion, the Justin Bieber-assisted “Stay,” which was one of the biggest singles in the U.S. in 2021. He has earned a pair of Grammy nominations, for Best New Artist and Album of the Year (as a featured guest on Bieber’s Justice). He released his debut album The First Time in 2023, and now he’s opening up like never before in a new film.

The young musician is the focus of a new documentary titled Kids Are Growing Up: A Story About A Kid Named Laroi, which premiered recently on Amazon’s Prime Video. The movie dives deep not only into his successes, but his hardships. It paints the superstar as not only a household name, but just another member of a generation plagued with anxiety, depression, and uncertainty—even the biggest and most beloved members of the bunch.

Simply put, Laroi isn’t solely a chart-topping, Grammy-nominated musician—he’s also just a kid. “At the end of the day, Laroi wants to make great music,” commented director and producer Michael D. Ratner during a recent Zoom to promote the documentary. “I think he's struggled with exactly who he is and when he should do certain things,” Ratner added, insisting that he’s not that different from his peers, “because any teenager deals with these issues.”

What does separate Laroi from the millions of young fans who are sure to tune into the film is his fame. “He's dealing with it on this huge scale with a lot of eyeballs and a lot of people depending on him,” Ratner sympathized while talking about the making of the movie.

For those who already know Laroi and his music, this documentary may give them further insight into some of his lyrics, or why he does (or doesn’t do) certain things. The film might also be an eye-opener for older viewers, who could learn a lot about how his generation is coping with a changing world and what they’re feeling.

I spoke with Ratner about how Kids Are Growing Up: A Story About A Kid Named Laroi came together, what he learned from someone much younger than he is, and how it was Bieber’s idea all along to put the younger pop star into the spotlight.


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