Starz’s upcoming NXIVM cult docuseries: Everything to know
The NXIVM cult has captured the attention of many people – partly because it’s a cult and the past few decades haven’t seen many cult reports (though experts say we’re primed & ready to see an influx soon – but that’s a whole other article). Another reason NXIVM has captured people’s attention is the fact they managed to lure in multiple young actresses and other famous women.
We’ve already seen documentaries on the subject – The Vow, recently took on the subject in their own docuseries. However, Starz is now set to release their own four-part series about the sex-slave cult led by Keith Raniere. Here’s what you need to know.
NXIVM heralded itself as a self-help group, but it functioned more like a multi-level-marketing scheme / pyramid scheme. There was a small focus on recruiting, but in the end what they really wanted from you was to pay for more & more self-help classes with exorbitant fees. Many members poured thousands of dollars into NXIVM.
While this is already a little shady, the truly dark aspect of the group was a sub-sect called DOS. This all-women group was blackmailed, micromanaged, and abused by Keith Rainere for his own pleasure & amusement. DOS members would also be physically branded (yes, the flesh burning kind of branding) with a combination of Keith Raniere’s initials and right-hand-woman & actress Allison Mack’s initials.
From being forced to take naked group photos to certain members being locked up for months on end as a form of punishment, the various goings on within the DOS sect of NXIVM were horrifying.
The Starz series is set to premiere its first episode on Sunday October 18. The series is titled Seduced: Inside The NXIVM Cult. This series specifically follows what happened to member India Oxenberg & her mother (actress Catherine Oxenberg) who watched India willingly enter into the clutches of the now famed cult.
The series will also look at how India eventually worked to help the U.S. government break up the cult as well as how she became indoctrinated in the first place and how she has worked to recover.
Cecilia Peck and Inbal B. Lessner are executive producers on the docuseries along with Daniel Voll, Alexandra Milchan, and India Oxenberg herself. Peck said about the documentary, “In many ways, India could be anyone’s daughter. She was a young woman victimized by a serial predator, and I wanted to find out how this 19-year-old girl had become indoctrinated. There was a fearless quality to her inquiry that we were drawn to.”
Aftermath of NXIVM
While the Starz series seems like it will be focusing on how India (and therefore other women) were drawn to NXIVM and eventually the downfall of the group, it doesn’t look as if it will address what’s currently happening – because, despite people like Keith Rainere, Allison Mack, Clare Bronfman, and others being arrested, this doesn’t mean it’s over.
All have had their trials, but so far only Bronfman has been sentenced. Bronfman has been sentenced to approximately six-and-a-half years in prison. Meanwhile, the leader, Rainere, will be sentenced at the end of this month on October 27. Prosecutors are asking for a sentence of life in prison.
Despite all the leaders being in prison for some time now, there are still devoted members of the cult. Some have even been spotted dancing outside the facility where Keith Rainere is being held and holding up vague signs of support. Originally they attempted to hide their motives and act as if they were a social movement, but eventually they admitted their true purpose.