If you're a fan of documentaries on TV, this is pretty massive news: HBO announced this week that "American Masters" creator Susan Lacy, a PBS stalwart, has signed a multiyear producing and directing deal.
"American Masters" premiered on WNET in 1986 and in its 27 years, the documentary series has produced over 190 films, winning nine Emmys for Outstanding Documentary or Nonfiction series. The 200th "American Masters" documentary will be Shane Salerno's "Salinger," which will premiere in 2014.
"It has been my honor to be part of the PBS and WNET family for so many years, and to have had the opportunity to amass a body of work which I hope demonstrates the depth of our unique cultural history and the value of quality documentaries in contributing to understanding our world," says Lacy in a PBS statement. "I have had the great privilege of working with some of the most talented filmmakers in the field, as well as the extraordinary individuals who have allowed us to tell their stories. I am now thrilled to become part of the HBO family. To work with the amazing Sheila Nevins and her team is the dream of most documentary filmmakers, and to be able to focus solely on producing and directing documentary films at a place which is creating some of the best television in history is an opportunity I couldn’t resist."
Adds PBS President and CEO Paula Kerger, Susan has left an indelible mark recording our nation’s collective history. She recognized long ago that the history of our country isn’t told only in the stories of our political leaders, but must also be seen through the eyes of our artists, musicians and dancers. We’re very sad to lose her leadership and vision at ‘American Masters,’ but will continue to build on her legacy with an ongoing commitment to ‘American Masters’ on PBS."