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Never Too Late: The Doc Severinsen Story

Starting at $89

A Film by Kevin Bright and Jeff Consiglio

85 minutes

Scene Selection • Closed Captioned

Grades 8 - Adult
Item #:NTL-2001

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K-12 Classrooms, Public Libraries: DVD - $89
K-12 Classrooms, Public Libraries: DVD + Digital File - $139
Community Screening, Businesses: $295
Colleges, Institutions: DVD - $345
Colleges: DVD with Digital Site License - $445
K-12 School District pricing available. Please inquire at [email protected]
After three decades as the colorful bandleader to The Tonight ShowStarring Johnny Carson, master trumpeter Doc Severinsen defies nature with a relentless schedule of touring and performing into his nineties. A musical icon traces his groundbreaking career and personal trials underscoring a life of inspiration and obsession.

In 2018, at the age of 90, Doc Severinsen is still going strong as he leaves home and sets off on a performance tour. At the gym, Doc demonstrates his grueling work-out routine while his trainer calls him "a freak of nature". He shares childhood memories of growing up in a small town in Oregon, and also looks back on his early marriages, including struggles with alcoholism, and his determination to find stability for his children. The film follows Doc around the country through joyful live performances as he nostalgically retraces the steps of his career from his big band beginnings to The Tonight Show.

As Doc joins The Tonight Show Starring Johnny Carson, he becomes beloved by millions of American households nightly. Through archival clips and contemporary interviews, we relive thirty years of music, comedy, and friendship of America's favorite talk show.

When Johnny Carson retires from The Tonight Show in 1992, Doc moves to Mexico. However, not ready to give up performing, he continues touring nonstop, even forming a new band, The San Miguel Five. Surrounded by family and doing what makes him happy, bringing joy to audiences, Doc is savoring every moment.

  • Questlove, Musician
  • Arturo Sandoval, Trumpeter
  • Chris Botti, Trumpeter
  • Ernie Watts, Saxophonist
  • David Steinberg, Comedian
  • Martin Mull, Actor
  • Bob Saget, Comedian


Doc Severinsen can still blow hard with his horn and hit the high notes, a result of his continued commitment to the practice studio and the refinement of his craft. A Grammy award winner, Doc as made more than 30 albums, from big band to jazz-fusion to classical. Doc regularly tours in a quintet called The San Miguel Five, performing a mix of Latin and jazz standards. In addition to his San Miguel Five appearances, Doc tours regularly with his own Big Band and continues to perform with symphony orchestras all over the country. In the end, Doc Severinsen has transcended his celebrity and rejoiced in his remarkable ability to simply play his trumpet as well as he can.

For its entire ten-year run, Kevin S. Bright was Executive Producer behind the Emmy Award winning television series "Friends" and directed over 50 episodes of the show including all 10 season finales. Bright's other producing credits include the "In Living Color" pilot and HBO's "Dream On". Bright was co-director of the short documentary Who Ordered Tax? (Audience Award, Nantucket Film Festival, Boston Film Festival) and Executive Producer of the award-winning SXSW feature documentaries Best and Most Beautiful Things and On These Grounds. Bright recently directed a documentary on the Korean dog meat trade, Nureongi.

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FILMMAKERS' STATEMENTS: "For 30 years, every night Monday through Friday, The Tonight Show glowed from our family TV set. While Johnny was the star, I watched the show for Doc, his musicianship, the cool outfits, the sharp wit, he was the man. Thirty years after The Tonight Show ended, I find Doc Severinsen at the age of 90, still looking cool and still playing the trumpet. I simply had to share my love of this inspiring man with his millions of fans."
— Kevin S. Bright

"Sharing Doc's awe-inspiring story is an honor. Doc should be known by all, he is a national treasure."
— Jeff Consiglio

Preview link available upon request. Contact [email protected] for more information
Never Too Late: The Doc Severinsen Story
Never Too Late: The Doc Severinsen Story

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