Monica Lewinsky Teams Up With Max Joseph for Documentary About Public Shaming
By Stacy Lambe
ALERIE MACON/AFP/Getty Images
Monica Lewinsky is taking a stand against bullies. The activist and speaker has teamed up with former Catfish co-host Max Joseph on a new documentary, 15 Minutes of Shame, that will “take an in-depth look at the public shaming epidemic in our culture and explore our collective need to destroy one another,” ET has learned.
In addition to executive producing the project, which will stream on HBO Max, both Lewinsky and Joseph will make on-screen appearances alongside “well known, bold-faced names” as they take viewers on a roller-coaster ride that is public shaming.
“Monica Lewinsky is an anti-bullying activist with unparalleled authority, making her the perfect partner for this project,” Sarah Aubrey, HBO Max’s head of original content, said in a statement. “And Max's strong advocacy for social justice and distinctive storytelling make him particularly well-suited to explore this complex modern phenomenon.”
In addition to Lewinsky and Joseph, Steve Ascher and Kristy Sabat serve as executive producers for Six West, the production company behind Lifetime’s Gretchen Carlson: Breaking the Silence.
While Lewinsky’s 2017 anti-bullying campaign, “In Real Life,” has earned an Emmy nomination, the new documentary marks the 46-year-old’s second major TV project. Earlier this year, FX announced that Lewinsky would produce Impeachment: American Crime Story, the third installment of Ryan Murphy’s Emmy-winning anthology series.
The new season will turn its attention to the 1998 impeachment trial of President Bill Clinton and stars Beanie Feldstein as the 22-year-old White House intern. Based on Jeffrey Toobin’s bestselling book A Vast Conspiracy: The Real Story of the Sex Scandal That Nearly Brought Down a President, American Crime Story will go inside the national scandal that made Lewinsky, Linda Tripp and Paula Jones key figures in the country’s first impeachment proceedings in over a century.
In an email to Vanity Fair, Lewinsky explained her reasons for signing on to produce Impeachment. “I was hesitant, and truthfully more than a little scared to sign on. But after a lengthy dinner meeting with Ryan, I came to understand even more clearly how dedicated he is to giving a voice to the marginalized in all of his brilliant work,” she wrote. “I’m privileged to work with him and the other talented people on the team, and I’m privileged to have this opportunity.”
She continued by writing, “People have been co-opting and telling my part in this story for decades. In fact, it wasn't until the past few years that I've been able to fully reclaim my narrative; almost 20 years later.” The opportunity to produce the series, she explained, “allows people like me who have been historically silenced to finally reintroduce my voice to the conversation.”