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Naomi Osaka is ‘terrified’ about the release of her new Netflix series: ‘This isn’t like a tennis match’

Naomi Osaka has mixed feelings about her latest project.

On Friday, the 23-year-old tennis star shared the movie poster of her new Netflix docuseries, Naomi Osaka. The three-part series, which was co-executive produced by LeBron James, showcases Osaka navigating her rise to fame following the 2018 U.S. Open when she was merely 20 years old. In a screenshot of a message typed in the Notes app, she admitted to being “terrified” of the documentary’s release, particularly after her recently making headlines for pulling out of two major competitions, citing concern for her mental health.

“This isn’t like a tennis match where I win or lose and from there people can say whether I did well or not,” she wrote in part. “This is a look into my life from certain time periods and I can’t fight the feeling of wondering how will it be received.”

Osaka added that the project is “in some ways my soul and a reflection of who I am” and hoped that the project could be relatable to others.

“I hope there are pieces that people can relate to and maybe other pieces that would help people understand why I make the choices I make. If it doesn’t that’s cool too, it took me a while but I realize that I can’t please everyone and I’m really not trying to. When I go to sleep at night I can only hope I am at peace with myself and I hope the same thing rings true for anyone reading this. I’m excited/nervous for you guys to see it and I hope you enjoy it lol. Love you all and stay safe,” she wrote.

Fans took to the comments to share their thoughts on the documentary and praised the athlete for her transparency.

“I love you watched it last night and got teary eyed so much. For certain i felt i could relate to a lot. its good to be at peace with you. you are beautiful inside and out,” a fan wrote.

“After watching, I feel like we all have a little Naomi Osaka inside of us. Our journeys are all so different, but yet we experience all the same feels,” someone said.

“Excellent work naomi congratulations. blessings,” a commenter added.

“Thank you for sharing something so tender and vulnerable,” another person continued.

This documentary comes weeks after Osaka announced that she would be withdrawing from the 2021 French Open after announcing she would not participate in the competition’s press conferences to protect her mental health, which has inspired widespread support and introspection on self-care, particularly for athletes.

Earlier this week, Osaka’s influence was demonstrated further when she announced the release of a Barbie doll in her image, which sold out in hours.

“I really hope every child is reminded that they can be and do anything,” she wrote in part in an Instagram post. “This is really seeing a dream of mine come to life, having your own Barbie and potentially seeing little kids playing with it. Omg.”

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