hbo documentary

I’ve finally felt comfortable enough to watch the HBO documentary about Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds, and I’ve managed to make it through it with only a few tears here and there. Debbie really was fading health-wise, so it’s all the more understandable that she couldn’t survive the stress and grief of losing Carrie. They really were quite a pair, and their absence has left a hole in the world that I’m not sure is ever going to totally heal.

Here’s a side effect of the documentary that I didn’t expect: Carrie had a lovely singing voice, and now I have a new Star Wars head canon that Leia used to sing baby Ben to sleep.

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HBO has a new trailer for the documentary Bright Lights: Starring Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds, which debuts Saturday, January 7.

Fisher is also one of two stars (along with George Michael) sharing the cover of the new issue of Entertainment Weekly. This issue will also have a feature on Reynolds.

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HBO has released the trailer for Beware the Slenderman, a documentary about the true story of two 12-year-old girls who stabbed a classmate 19 times in the name of Slenderman, the popular internet character, in 2014.

Directed by Irene Taylor Brodsky, the film will premiere on HBO on January 23.

Beware the Slenderman tells the story of the internet’s elusive Boogeyman and two 12-year-old girls who would kill for him. Morgan Geyser and Anissa Weier lured their best friend into the woods, stabbed her 19 times, then set out on an odyssey to meet the tall and faceless man known online as Slenderman. Shot over 18 months with heartbreaking access to the families of the would-be murderers, the film plunges deep down the rabbit hole of their crime, a Boogeyman and our society’s most impressionable consumers of media. The entrance to the internet can quickly lead us to its dark basement, within just a matter of clicks. How much do we hold children responsible for what they find there?

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11 Transgender Americans Share Their Stories In HBO’s ‘The Trans List’

Eleven Americans describe what it’s like to be transgender in Timothy Greenfield-Sanders’ new HBO documentary, The Trans List. Though the individuals in the film come from varied backgrounds, there is at least one common thread to their experiences: “We all come out publicly,” lawyer Kylar Broadus tells Fresh Air’s Terry Gross. “There is no hidden way to come out as a trans person.”

Broadus, who is profiled in the documentary, was born female, but has been living as a man since the 1990s. “I took a lot of crap [coming out], because, you know, I was out when lots of people weren’t,” he says. “At that time, everyone was losing their jobs. If you came out, you lost your job.”

Also in The Trans List is Nicole Maines, a young woman who filed (and won) a discrimination lawsuit against her school district, after she was forbidden from using the girls’ bathroom.

Moms Mabley

Born Loretta Mary Aiken  but better known as Jackie “Moms” Mabley was an African-American comedian known for raunchy stand-up routines and hit albums. At one time the most successful woman standup comic in America she remains the highest-charting comedienne in Billboard history. A pioneer of social satire,she has strongly influenced such contemporary African-American comedians such as Richard Pryor & Whoopi Goldberg. In her early years, she toured vaudeville on the so-called “chitlin’ circuit” of African-American venues, such as the Apollo. Appearances on 1960s and early ’70s on TV programs like the Ed Sullivan Show & The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour helped to boost her career. She became famous for her persona as a frumpy, middle-aged woman in a housedress and floppy hat.

She came out as a lesbian at the age of twenty-seven, becoming one of the first openly gay comedians. During the 1920s and 1930s she appeared in androgynous clothing  and recorded several of her early “lesbian stand-up” routines.

At 75 years old, she became the oldest living person to have a Top 40 hit in the United States with her cover of “Abraham, Martin and John.”

She is the subject of the Emmy-nominated documentary, airing on HBO on November 18, 2013, “Whoopi Goldberg Presents Moms Mabley,” which explores her life, comedy & sexuality.  

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“Mother and I live next door to each other, separated by one daunting hill. I usually come to her. I always come to her.”

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Don’t miss the HBODocs film ‘Suited,’ debuting Monday, June 20 at 9/8c on @HBO. The special documentary tells the story of Brooklyn’s Bindle & Keep, a bespoke tailoring company that caters to a diverse LGBTQ community and looks beyond the gender binary. The film spotlights the intimate journey of coming into a new identity, accepting difference and living bravely in one’s own skin. 

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Here’s the entire recorded stream of us reacting to the awful Beware the Slenderman HBO documentary and our Q & A afterward.

“There ain’t nothing an old man can do for me except bring me a message from a young one.”

Today’s Black History Month Tribeca selection centers around a bona fide entertainment legend, as presented by a bona fide entertainment legend.

In 2013, Whoopi Goldberg directed the superb HBO documentary Moms Mabley: I Got Somethin’ to Tell You, which offers a deep and rare look into the life of the iconic Moms Mabley, a remarkable pioneer who submerged her own identity in order to create a singular comic persona.