The Homecomers

Episode 3: Reframing the Story of Appalachia

September 10, 2019

Acclaimed West Virginia documentarian Elaine McMillion Sheldon talks with Sarah Smarsh about getting regional stories right and the universality of addiction. Sheldon is an Academy Award-nominated documentary filmmaker who explores stories of identity, resilience, and hope. She is the director of two documentaries about America’s opioid crisis, Recovery Boys and the Emmy-winning Heroin(e). Sheldon also received a 2013 Peabody award, a 2014 Emmy nomination, and 3rd prize in the World Press Photo Multimedia Awards for her interactive documentary Hollow, which explores the lives lived in post-industrial, rural Appalachia. Learn more at and follow the show on TwitterFacebook and Instagram.

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