The documentary film “THE RINGLEADER: THE CASE OF THE BLING RING”, an HBO Original, is directed by Emmy®-nominated filmmaker Erin Lee Carr, known for her work on HBO’s “I Love You, Now Die: The Commonwealth V. Michelle Carter” and “At The Heart of Gold: Inside The USA Gymnastics Scandal”.
The documentary film “The Ringleader: The Case of the Bling Ring” delves into the motivations of Rachel Lee, who was considered the mastermind behind a series of high-profile celebrity robberies that occurred in 2008 and 2009. In a candid and first-time interview with Lee, the film explores the reasons behind her actions, such as mental health issues, addictions, and the influence of the celebrity-driven culture that encouraged the group of friends she was associated with to break into homes and steal valuable items. The film also sheds light on the unsophisticated nature of the crime ring, which consisted of teenagers from Calabasas, and highlights the specific homes they targeted, including those belonging to Paris Hilton, Orlando Bloom, and Lindsay Lohan. Despite remaining silent about her involvement, Lee was labeled as the ringleader by the media and her former friends, creating a sensation that captivated the public’s interest.
More than 10 years later, after serving a prison sentence, Lee finally opens up about her childhood and her involvement in the crime spree. She also discusses the culture of idolizing celebrities that was prevalent in the early 2000s, when socialites and Hollywood stars flaunted their luxurious lifestyles on social media and reality shows. Lee, driven by her desire to be popular in high school and to imitate her idols, used celebrity websites to track her victims’ locations. Alongside her friends, she targeted well-known figures like Paris Hilton, Lindsay Lohan, and Orlando Bloom, breaking into their homes and stealing over three million dollars worth of watches, jewelry, designer clothes, and money. “The Ringleader: The Case of the Bling Ring” chronicles the months of burglaries, the aftermath of the arrests and trials, and the subsequent blame that was cast. It sheds light on a culture that influenced troubled teenagers from a wealthy California neighborhood, who despite their privileged backgrounds, still felt like outsiders and believed they deserved the extravagant lifestyles of the rich and famous.
Rachel Lee is accompanied by journalists Allen Salkin and Amy Kaufman, as well as Deputy District Attorneys for L.A. County Christine Kee and Sarika Kim. Additionally, burglary victim Eden Shizzle and Rachel’s father David Lee are also featured participants.
HBO Documentary Films is presenting “The Ringleader: The Case of the Bling Ring,” a production by Story Syndicate in association with Carr Lot Productions.
The film is directed by Erin Lee Carr, with Erin Lee Carr and Dani Sloane as producers. The executive producers are Sandi Tan, Dan Cogan, Liz Garbus, Jon Bardin, and Kate Barry. For HBO, the executive producers are Nancy Abraham, Lisa Heller, and Sara Rodriguez.
It will premiere on Sunday, October 1st from 9:00-10:35 p.m. ET/PT on HBO and will also be available to stream on Max.