Joan Rivers last month.(Larry Busacca/Getty Images for Tribeca Film Festiva)
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Rivers on a Roll

The hardest-working woman in show business

Dina Mann
May 26, 2010
Joan Rivers last month.(Larry Busacca/Getty Images for Tribeca Film Festiva)

Move over Betty White: Joan Rivers is the next young lady of the moment. Besides making two television series—her second season of TV Land’s How’d You Get So Rich? has just begun, and shooting for her WE reality show Mother Knows Best starts this summer—Rivers is the subject of a critically-acclaimed documentary that premiered at Sundance, and a profile in New York.

The article follows the 76-year-old comedienne as she goes to Sundance to promote Joan Rivers: A Piece Of Work, set for a theatrical release on June 11. Along the way, we learn about:

• The Joan Rivers Diet, under which “You can eat anything you want before 3 p.m. and then nothing for the rest of the day.”

•Her friendship with Prince Charles. “Not inner circle,” she says. “Outer-inner circle.”

• Her age. “Age sucks. It’s the final mountain.”

The documentary also highlights the doggedness that keeps Rivers in a Versailles-like mansion on East 62nd Street, including her meticulous maintenance of an archive of one-liners, which are organized by category in an index card catalog (think your town library anytime before 1999). The documentary also apparently shows her soft side, including intimate moments with her grandson Cooper as they make a Thanksgiving food delivery to a wheelchair-bound woman living with multiple sclerosis.

This past Sunday night, on NBC’s The Celebrity Apprentice —yup, she’s on that too; a former winner, she is host Donald Trump’s right-hand-woman this season—she kvelled over Bret Michaels’s rock-solid performance on the show as well as his tenacity to live through recent health problems. Perhaps Rivers should be kvelling about herself, too?