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Documentary Showcase

She’s the Best Thing In It
USA, 2015, 79 min., Color

After winning a Tony Award for her performance in Grey Gardens, 79-year-old veteran actress Mary Louise Wilson decides to try her hand at teaching acting to college students in her hometown of New Orleans. Her students, who dream of stardom and fame, are in for quite the experience.

In SHE’S THE BEST THING IN IT, Wilson–a sassy, fiery and refreshing film subject–shares her stories of the stage, struggles, loss and family.

Academy-Award nominated screenwriter Ron Nyswaner beautifully captures the craft of acting and the women at the top of their game who are often overlooked. Additional interviews with Frances McDormand, Melissa Leo, Tyne Daly, Estelle Parsons, playwright Doug Wright and others support this thoughtful and charming documentary, giving us a glimpse into the life of a character actor.

— Sarah Harris
Ron Nyswaner
Ron Nyswaner, Neda Armian, Jeffrey Schwarz
Philip Dorling, Ron Nyswaner
Eric F. Martin, Tyler Hubby, Jeffrey Schwarz
Jay Israelson
Mary Louise Wilson, Frances McDormand, Melissa Leo, Valerie Harper, Tyne Daly, Estelle Parsons, Mary Birdsong, Lisa Joyce, Doug Wright
Associate Producer
Anya Leta
Post Production Supervisor
Eric F. Martin

Director Bio

University of Pittsburgh graduate, Ron Nyswaner, is the author of several acclaimed films including the groundbreaking film, PHILADEPHIA (1993), which won two Academy Awards, and several nominations for Nyswanter including a Golden Globe, Writers’ Guild, BAFTA and Academy Awards. His film SOLDIER’S GIRL premiered at the 2003 Sundance Film Festival, received a Peabody Award and was named by the American Film Institute as one of the ten outstanding television events of the year. Nyswaner is a founding member of the Actors & Writers Theater Company in upstate New York, serves on the board of the Woodstock Film Festival, and as an advisor for the Sundance Institute.

Screenings Co-presented by:
Dallas Theater Center