HBO Documentary Chief Sheila Nevins Leaving Position

Docs_Header-150x150From an official HBO press release comes confirmation that long-running Programming Producer Shelia Nevins is leaving, but not really calling it ‘retirement’. Here it is in its entirety.





People_SheilaNevins-200x300After 38 years at HBO, Sheila Nevins, president, HBO Documentary and Family Programming has announced that she is leaving the network to “pursue the rest of my life.” “HBO is in my DNA and I will always consider it to be my alma mater,” commented Nevins.

“The word legend is often thrown around loosely in our business, but in Sheila’s case it actually applies,” says HBO chairman and CEO Richard Plepler. “She has been an integral part of HBO’s extraordinary success. Her impact, not only in the documentary field, but throughout popular culture is nothing short of remarkable, and she has built an extraordinary team that is second to none in our industry. To say that we will miss her is insufficient, but we are thrilled that she will continue to wear her artistic hat on a number of documentary projects for HBO in the coming years.”

Nevins will depart HBO in early 2018. During her tenure at HBO, Nevins oversaw the production of more than 1000 documentary films and earned more Primetime Emmys than any other individual. As an executive producer or producer, she has received 32 Primetime Emmy Awards, 35 News and Documentary Emmys and 42 George Foster Peabody Awards. HBO’s critically acclaimed documentaries have also gone on to win 26 Academy Awards.

Nevins was named vice president, Documentary and Family Programming in 1985; appointed senior vice president, Original Programming, in 1995; promoted to executive vice president, Original Programming, in 1999; and named president, HBO Documentary Films, in 2004, responsible for overseeing the development and production of all documentaries and family programming for HBO, HBO2 and CINEMAX. She has been honored with numerous prestigious career achievement awards, including, most recently, the 2017 DOC NYC’s Lifetime Achievement Award and the 2009 Governor’s Award from the Academy of Television Arts & Sciences, and was made an NYU Tisch School of the Arts Honoree. She is also the recipient of a 2008 Gotham Awards Tribute; a 2005 Emmy Lifetime Achievement Award for her contributions to the art of the documentary, the first time the National Television Academy awarded Lifetime Achievement recognition to a documentarian; and a Personal Peabody in 1999 in recognition of her work and ongoing commitment to excellence. She won the first George Foster Peabody Award ever presented to a cable program for “She’s Nobody’s Baby,” which was produced with Ms. magazine.

Nevins is also the New York Times bestselling author of “You Don’t Look Your Age…and Other Fairy Tales,” published by Flatiron Books.


At least it states she’ll be back at HBO from time to time for special collaborations. As a site that reviews every HBO Documentary Films presentation that comes along, we will miss her invaluable input and creative drive. She was responsible for launching AMERICA UNCOVER, REAL SEX, TAXICAB CONFESSIONS and acclaimed works such as Alex Gibney’s Scientology exposé GOING CLEAR: SCIENTOLOGY AND THE PRISON OF BELIEF, the Edward Snowden doc CITIZENFOUR and the Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds profile BRIGHT LIGHTS and so many more profiling crimes, addictions, entertainment and politics. With this transition, however, we look forward to seeing who fills her position and what shape the department takes moving forward. THANK YOU, SHEILA NEVINS!

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