'Woody Allen: A Documentary' Trailer

Thanks to a career that spans all the way back to the '50s and includes nearly four dozen directorial efforts — more than a few of which are well-loved classics — Woody Allen is one of those all-American icons everyone's familiar with. But since he's almost as private as he is prolific, he's also a figure that retains a surprising amount of mystery. While he's hardly a hermit on the order of J.D. Salinger, Allen has tended to stay quiet about his personal life and creative process throughout the years.

Happily, the allure of becoming part of PBS' American Masters series was apparently too much for even Allen to resist. The legendary writer-filmmaker has revealed himself like never before for Woody Allen: A Documentary, directed by Robert Weide (Curb Your Enthusiasm) and produced by Brett Ratner (seriously!). The two-part, three-and-a-half-hour film follows Allen's tale from his Brooklyn childhood all the way through his current work. Check out the trailer after the jump.

[via First Showing]

I don't think the trailer itself is terribly exciting — it consists mostly of talking heads agreeing that Allen is "kinda peerless" if "a little nutty" while "Sing Sing Sing" plays in the background — but I'm definitely intrigued by the promise of a rare glimpse into the inner workings of a great American director.

Weide was allowed unprecedented access to Allen for a year and a half for the documentary, following the filmmaker from the London shoot of You Will Meet a Tall Dark Stranger all the way to this year's Cannes premiere of Midnight in Paris. Along the way, Weide also recorded dozens of interviews with Allen's friends and former colleagues, including John Cusack, Scarlett Johansson, Diane Keaton, Sean Penn, Martin Scorsese, and many, many others.

Woody Allen: A Documentary will air Sunday, November 20 from 9-11 PM and Monday, November 21 from 9-10:30 PM. Head over to PBS.org for more details.