New Cilla Black documentary explores the TV star's fascinating life story - here's where to watch it

ITV will explore the life of one of Britain’s most celebrated TV stars, Cilla Black, with a new documentary.

Thanks to some recently uncovered tapes, Cilla: The Lost Tapes will provide a rare glimpse into the personal life of the singer-turned-host whose career spanned over 50 years.

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Here’s everything you need to know about the new hour-long documentary.

How did Cilla Black become famous?

Cilla Black rose to prominence as a singer in the 1960s, after John Lennon persuaded the Beatles’ agent, Brian Epstein to let her audition for him.

She quickly became his only female client and set off on a hugely successful musical career.

Her 1964 single Anyone Who Had A Heart went straight to number one in the UK charts and ultimately became the decade’s best-selling single by a female artist.

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She was part of a new wave of female British singers which also included Dusty Springfield and Lulu.

By 1971, Black had broken into the top 10 with 11 different singles, with eight more of her songs reaching the top 40.

After her success in the music industry, Black moved into the world of television. While she first appeared as a comedic actor, her place in British popular culture was cemented by her role as a presenter.

Hosting shows like Blind Date, Surprise Surprise and Moment of Truth, she became one of the most famous TV presenters in the country.

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Throughout her life, Black’s political leanings were often the source of controversy.

She was a passionate supporter of Margaret Thatcher and the Conservative party, both of whom were deeply unpopular in her hometown, Liverpool.

In 1997, she was awarded an OBE and in 2013 was honoured with a spectacular one-off TV special celebrating her 50 years in showbusiness.

When did Cilla Black die?

Cilla Black died aged 72 in her holiday home in the Spanish town of Estepona in 2015.

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Her sons confirmed that she had died from a stroke following a fall in her home.

What is the new documentary about?

Using never-before-seen footage uncovered by her sons, the new documentary will offer an intimate glimpse into the private life of one of the UK’s biggest stars.

After their mother’s death in 2015, the two were cleaning out her house when they stumbled across hours of footage recorded throughout her life.

These “lost tapes” will be broadcast for the first time in the new documentary.

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The show will explore Black’s rise to fame, her early career ambitions and her experiences growing up in Liverpool in the 1960s.

The new footage shows her hanging around with the Beatles, performing on-stage, escaping to various exotic and the burgeoning romance between her and her husband, Bobby Willis.

It will be narrated by actor Sheridan Smith, who previously played Cilla Black in the 2014 biopic, Cilla.

The new documentary will also feature tributes from some of Black’s famous friends like Paul O’Grady, Cliff Richard, Christopher Biggins, Simon Cowell and Holly Willoughby.

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The show will be the second piece of “lost” Cilla Black content to emerge in 2020 – on Valentine’s Day, a previously unreleased song called “You’re Sensational” was released by Warner Music.

Where can I watch it?

Cilla: The Lost Tapes will air on ITV at 9pm on Wednesday 19 February.

If you miss it on Wednesday, you can catch up afterwards online via the ITV Hub.

This article originally appeared on our sister site, the Lancashire Evening Post.