Danny Williams documentary premieres at Atlantic Film Festival
Danny begins and ends with Williams's resignation as Newfoundland and Labrador's premier
A new documentary chronicling former Newfoundland and Labrador Premier Danny Williams's tumultuous seven years in office is premiering Saturday at the 34th annual Atlantic Film Festival.
Danny begins and ends with Williams's resignation as Newfoundland and Labrador's premier.
Williams says, though he's used to seeing himself on television, it was different to watch a film made about him and his life.
"The first time I saw it, it was a broad range of emotions, from laughter to tears," he says.
The film is produced by the National Film Board and directed by Justin Simms and William D. MacGillivray.
It took the NFB team three years to put the piece together. Simms says it was a thrill to work with Williams.
"He's a fascinating figure in Newfoundland, certainly fascinating nationally as well," he says.
Many people are interviewed in the film, many commenting on Williams's leadership and his style.
Williams says he loved all the comments from those interviewed in the film, but in particular was impressed by those of his three closest advisers.
"It kind of verified what I thought, that half the time, they must have thought I was just crazy — but they stayed the course, and some of it worked it out in the end," he says.
Williams is pleased with the film.
"Whatever people might think of me, the team did a great job. It also forced me to document a big part of my life, and I'm very grateful to the whole team for doing that," he says.
Though the film mostly focuses on politics, it also reveals some personal aspects of Williams's life — the break up of his marriage, and the role Williams's mother played by inspiring his political career.
As well as taking viewers through Williams's several years of leadership, it also re-examines confederation and Newfoundland and Labrador's relationship with Canada, from a 2014 perspective.
WIlliams told the CBC, he tried to semi-retire but, "I just can't do it."
These days he's busy as president and CEO of the St. John's Ice Caps. He's also involved in an affordable housing project in St John's, and he's building a new residential community, which he expects will someday have up to 15,000 residents. He named the development "Galway," after his mother's maiden name.
Williams told the CBC he has no plan to return to politics.
The former premier will be in Halifax for the premiere screening on Saturday night, Sept. 13 at 9:30 p.m. at Cineplex Cinemas Park Lane.