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Céline Dion Calls Prime Video Documentary 'A Love Letter To My Fans' In a Message at Her Montreal Premiere

The Quebec artist is as vulnerable as ever in 'I Am: Céline Dion,' which premiered on June 17 before its official release on June 25. Here's what we learned from the sneak peek of the film, which is raw and vulnerable and sometimes hard to watch.

Céline Dion in 'I Am : Céline Dion'

Céline Dion in 'I Am : Céline Dion'

Prime Video

The Maisonneuve Theatre in Montreal was packed to celebrate Quebec's national treasure, Céline Dion.

Monday evening, June 17, Prime Video organized a handful of previews of Irene Taylor's highly anticipated documentary I Am: Céline Dion. In Montreal, where Billboard Canada was among the guests, many people came to attend the special screening.


The show began with a gift from the star to her fans: an appearance from the world premiere in New York, from where she warmly addressed the audience alongside her eldest son René-Charles Angélil. Back in Montreal, the silence was almost religious.

"Me too! I love you too!" responded one member of the audience, before a chant erupted in French: “We love you Céline!"

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Céline thanked the I Am Céline Dion team, her record company Sony, her neurologist, Dr. Amanda Piquet, her loved ones, and especially her fans — all with a touch of humour.

Then, as the documentary was about to begin, Céline addressed the Montreal public directly in a separate recorded video message.

“This is my love letter to my fans," she said. "This film is for you, thank you."

Here are three things we learned from the almost two-hours long I Am: Céline Dion, in which she opens up about her illness and reveals herself.

Living with Stiff Person Syndrome (SPS)

Céline Dion has talked about it several times in her recent interviews, but I Am: Céline Dion unabashedly exposes the harsh realities of Stiff Person Syndrom. The documentary begins and ends with images of Céline in the midst of the SPS, distraught and distressed. Without falling into voyeurism, the vignettes show the extent of the illness.

These images, however, could have benefitted from a trigger warning. The scenes are sometimes difficult to bear. One person even fainted during the Montreal premiere.

Céline Dion remains Céline Dion

We know she is uncompromising, combative and determined, and these personality traits which have always characterized her have aided in her recovery. In I Am: Céline Dion, what stands out even more is the humour that she demonstrates despite her circumstances. It seems to give her the strength necessary to continue moving forward, despite the numerous challenges imposed by SPS.

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There are also multiple declarations of love to her fans which punctuate the documentary. Céline, grateful, says she would not be here without her audience who have always followed and supported her.

In general, there is a lot of Céline's voice in I Am: Céline Dion. In fact, she's the only one who speaks in the film.

Singing and performing

Céline Dion is very attached to her tour memories. In the documentary, she lets us into her huge warehouse where she stores her stage and evening outfits and reveals some secrets and anecdotes, which are always hilarious.

She shares words for each of her collaborators, from costume designers to musicians to butler. “I became who I am thanks to all these people,” she says.

At the heart of it, though, the most touching parts of the film are those where she sings. Clips from studio, where she makes progress, makes mistakes, starts again, are incredibly touching.

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Dion envies rock stars who go out, who smoke, who drink and maintain their lifestyle. “But no, I drink water and I sleep twelve hours a day,” she jokes.

I Am: Céline Dion is out June 25 on Prime Video.

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