• A shot from Beyonce’s debut film, Life Is but a Dream

Earlier this week HBO released the trailer for pop singer Beyonce’s upcoming directorial debut, Life Is but a Dream, a documentary about her life and career. While the release of a new movie trailer isn’t generally something to get excited about, this particular trailer represents the arrival of a film that’s a complete product of its day and age—something unique to an era in which daily life is slowly but surely moving away from a physical reality and closer toward a digital, image-based reality.

As detailed in a recent interview with GQ, Beyonce appears hell-bent on documenting every single moment of her waking life. Stored in what writer Amy Wallace calls the “official Beyoncé archive,” a “temperature-controlled digital-storage facility,” is “virtually every existing photograph of her . . . every interview she’s ever done; every video of every show she’s ever performed; every diary entry she’s ever recorded while looking into the unblinking eye of her laptop.” The majority of the film is purportedly culled from this archive, which is also said to include “thousands of hours of private footage, compiled by a ‘visual director’ Beyonce employs who has shot practically her every waking moment, up to sixteen hours a day, since 2005.”