“I’m sick of the sappy biographies on TV. I knew this would be done in a real way. I thought, let’s do this properly.” That included Joan in the raw – no makeup, insecurities exposed, and the use of rain as a metaphor.
“The girls who directed this film are types who truly wear black – they’re New York girls, vegans, very intense. I knew Ricky Stern’s mother. I think Ricky and Annie (Sunberg) thought they were going to follow the play, take it to Broadway and go from there. Unfortunately the play never happened.”
“The reason this is such a sweet moment is because we couldn’t get any financing. Nobody wanted to give them a nickel. This is all Ricky Stern’s father’s money. Well, a little of Ricky’s too. There was none of the expectation of I’ll show them. It was just, let’s do it.”
“I had two speeches for Sundance (written by daughter, Melissa) – one if they hated it and one if they loved it. I was the only woman wearing sable. The rest of them wore cloth and rags. The reception was so incredible. We stood in the back and couldn’t believe it. This is the first gift in my career since my first night on Carson that has gotten such a response.”
Rivers says she’s now hawking products for women. “One is a cover-up for legs that you can go swimming in. The other is for women with thinning hair. Actresses have been doing it for years. Fill in the space and don’t see the shine. I don’t need to do another 12 lipsticks. I wanted to do something that helped.
She lives for her Wednesday nights. When she is in NYC, she works out at a club. “I love going to a little space where you can say anything to 100 people and it’s all like friends.” For years, she’d been performing at The Cutting Room until it closed. Without a beat, Rivers moved over to Laurie Beecham’s Theatre.
Until now. Rivers plans to move to Los Angeles for half the year. Melissa called and said, “We miss you. Come back to L.A.” She will bunk with Melissa, her grandson, Melissa’s beau and another housemate. Being the perfect businesswoman, she is taking advantage of the situation and shooting a reality show based around it.
And theatre lovers are in for a treat. “There’s a room at the Geffen Theatre that I may go into. They need some help and I need somewhere to work out my act.”
As only Joan could, she joked with the crowd. A woman from the audience yelled that she drove from Palm Springs. “Are you Jewish?” Joan asked. “Are you gay? Did you sleep with Sinatra?”