Mary Tyler Moore is remembered by many as feminist icon Mary Richards, the journalist Moore played in The Mary Tyler Moore Show in the ‘70s, or as Laura Petrie, the loving wife and stay-at-home mom in The Dick Van Dyke Show.
But Moore, like all women, was complicated and suffered her own private struggles throughout her life, including alcohol addiction, type-1 diabetes, the loss of her only son, two divorces and at least one miscarriage. In 1980, she was nominated for an Academy Award for playing a grieving mother in Ordinary People.
In the last thirty-five years of her life, Moore moved to New York City from Los Angeles, found true love with Dr. S. Robert Levine, who was 18 years her junior, and becoming a global advocate for diabetes research through her work as international chairman of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF).
To produce Being Mary Tyler Moore, the filmmakers were given unprecedented access to Moore’s archive, allowing them to chronicle her life and career, which spanned 60 years. The film features interviews with family members, colleagues, and people whose lives Moore impacted such as directors Rob Reiner, Michael Lindsay-Hogg and Jim Burrows; actors Ed Asner, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Lena Waithe, Phylicia Rashad, Bernadette Peters and Joel Grey; writers and producers Allan Burns, James L. Brooks, Norman Lear, Debra Martin Chase, Treva Silverman and Susan Silver; and Moore’s husband of 34 years, Levine.
The film is directed and produced by Emmy-winning filmmaker James Adolphus and produced by Lena Waithe, Debra Martin Chase, Ben Selkow, Rishi Rajani, Andrew C. Coles, Laura Gardner, Levine and Michael Bernstein. For HBO, executive producers are Nancy Abraham, Lisa Heller and coordinating producer Anna Klein.
HBO Documentary Films produced the film in association with Fifth Season, a Hillman Grad production, a Debra Martin Chase production, a The Mission Entertainment Production, and a Good Trouble Studios production.
Being Mary Tyler Moore premiered at SXSW in Austin in March and it debuts on HBO on Friday, May 26 at 8 p.m. ET/PT. It will also be available to stream on Max.