Netflix probes Madeleine McCann disappearance in new documentary – but parents Kate and Gerry want ‘NOTHING to do’ with controversial film
- EXCLUSIVE: Madeleine documentary expected to be streamed this month
- Maddie’s parents Kate and Gerry McCann have refused to take part in the show
- Maddie vanished from an apartment in Portugal’s Praia da Luz in May 2007
Netflix has made a new documentary about the disappearance of Madeleine McCann which is due to be screened this month with the Oscar winning streaming service already predicting it will be a huge global success, MailOnline can reveal.
Maddie’s parents Kate and Gerry have refused to take part in the show despite numerous requests from producers Pulse Films over the past 18 months.
The couple’s ‘Tapas Seven’ holiday pals and their spokesperson and close friend Clarence Mitchell have also snubbed the venture, saying: ‘We want nothing to do with it.’
Netflix are due to release a new documentary about the disappearance of Madeleine McCann
But Netflix – which scooped three awards at last month’s Oscars for Roma, which follows the life of a live-in housekeeper of a middle-class family in Mexico City – is boasting it has ‘riveting’ new interviews with key investigators as the 12th anniversary of the world’s most famous missing child cases approaches.
A source close to the movie makers said today: ‘Everyone everywhere is fascinated by the Maddie story. We would have welcomed the opportunity of working with the McCanns directly but they informed us they couldn’t and wouldn’t consider taking part while a police investigation is into their daughter’s abduction is ongoing.
‘But we have interesting new interviews with people close to the inquiry and we believe we can give justice to this unbelievably tragic story.’
Three-year-old Maddie vanished from a holiday apartment in Portugal’s Praia da Luz in May 2007 while her parents were dining with pals in a nearby tapas restaurant. Maddie had been left sleeping alone with her younger twin siblings Sean and Amelie with regular half hourly checks being made on the children.
Renowned cardiologist Gerry and former GP Kate, both 50, from Rothley, Leicestershire, cling onto a glimmer of hope their eldest child could still be found alive.
It is not yet known if the documentary, which has cost up to a reported £20 million, will be a one off, a two parter or as originally intended an eight part series.
A friend of the McCann’s said: ‘We understand it is a serialised drama but neither Kate, Gerry nor their holiday friends and main players have co-opertated in any shape or form. And we have no idea who the actors are. We believe it is coming out very soon, within the next two weeks and before the next anniversary.
‘Netflix had been hoping to screen it last year but the project took them a lot longer than expected. They had been wanting to string it out over eight episodes but it may now be a one or two parter.’
An insider at Pulse Films said: ‘Netflix are hoping it will be a massive hit.’
It is not known if retired Portuguese detective Goncalo Amaral, who is still embroiled in a long running bitter libel battle with the McCanns, has agreed to take part. In his best seller book ‘The Truth of the Lie’ he accuses Maddie’s parents – who were once suspects in their daughter’s disappearance – of faking her kidnap after she accidentally died in the holiday flat.
The McCann pal: ‘The family understand Mr Amaral and Portuguese police officers have been approached. Their lawyers will be keeping watch for any potentially libellous material.’
Renowned cardiologist Gerry and former GP Kate, both 50, did not take part in the making of the new documentary
The search for Maddie – who was just nine days away from her fourth birthday – has became the most high-profile missing person investigation in history. The youngster’s face in iconic pictures is recognisable around the world.
Netflix has had a string of successful true crime documentaries including hit documentary Making A Murderer on wrongly jailed American student Amanda Knox for British student Meredith Kercher’s murder.
And the streaming service scooped three gongs at the Oscars for Best Director for Roma, Best Cinematography and Foreign Language Film while being nominated for Best Picture.
The Maddie movie – the title of which is being kept a closely guarded secret – will examine the high profile case and interview key figures and investigators. Film makers have made several trips to the family’s village to speak to villagers and have also interviewed journalists who have been covering the story over the years.
It will be screened as Scotland Yard wait to find out from the Home Office if they will be granted extra public funding to continue their painstaking search for the missing girl.
The McCann’s have been given fresh hope, as police request more money, saying: ‘They’ve given us belief there is still work left to be done.’
The latest funding is due to run out within weeks at the end of the current financial year and the force’s request for extra money will now be carefully considered. Funding through Special Grants has already cost the British taxpayer a massive £11.75 million.
A Home Office spokesperson said: ‘We have received and are considering a request from the MPS (Metropolitan Police Service) to extend funding for Operation Grange until the end of March 2020.’
The couple’s spokesperson Mr Mitchell told MailOnline: ‘Kate and Gerry are extremely grateful to the Metropolitan Police for making a new funding application and whilst they know it is not guaranteed they are hoping it will be approved. It shows that officers are still doing everything they can to get a resolution after all this time. And it gives them hope that one day they may finally find out what happened to their daughter.
‘It gives them belief there is still work left to be done.’
Mr Mitchell said eminent heart doctor Gerry and Kate, now a medical worker, will never give up looking for their daughter. She would now be aged 15, nearly 16 .
He declined to discuss the Netflix project.
MailOnline has contacted Netflix for comment.