What an impressive record of documentaries on the subject of addiction! Then again, what an impressive record of documentaries! Last week, Phoenix House honored President of HBO's Documentary Films Sheila Nevins at Cipriani 42nd Street. With Michael Douglas and Catherine Zeta-Jones by her side, Nevins had a ringside seat watching the reel of her green-lit films, from her comprehensive 9-part series, Addiction, to Wishful Drinking, Elaine Stritch: At Liberty, and others from a stunning decades long career. Many film insiders were abuzz, fresh from Sundance where HBO's controversial new non-fiction film, Going Clear: Scientology and the Prison of Belief, premiered to a packed house. This weekend she is to be awarded at the Athena Film Festival at Barnard College, in tandem with a screening of Rosie O'Donnell: A Heartfelt Stand Up, and a panel about women and heart disease. I had the opportunity to talk to Sheila Nevins about her awards, and HBO's current documentaries. For this veteran television producer, what appears to be a crazy busy time may just be business as usual.
I've been doing it so long I'm bound to be a success here or there. I think, who else has been around for 30 years? I'm not being modest. I am a warhorse.