In December, it presented Restless, a miniseries starring Michelle Dockery of Downton Abbey.And now, with a heightened emphasis on scripted fare, Sundance has planned a slate of shows that include, starting in March, Top of the Lake, a seven-part series written and directed by Academy Award-winning Jane Campion and starring Holly Hunter and Elisabeth Moss (Mad Men).

And reality-centric Bravo has signed actress Anna Gunn (Breaking Bad) for the lead role in Rita, one of several scripted pilots it has in development.

However, he says he feels comfortable in his skin for the first time in his life now that he has joined the Venice Beach Freakshow where he has met performers including a bearded lady and America's smallest couple.

For Heslip, the tumors on his body began appearing around puberty but became more severe as he aged.

He noted that when he got married 25 years ago he did not have any bumps on his face, but now he does.'I want to teach people that it's not taboo to ask questions.

I'm OK talking about it,' he told the Huffington Post.

'My son and oldest daughter also have this condition and my speaking out about it gets them excited.

They know my attitude is positive.'The most common symptoms include six or more light brown skin spots (café au lait spots), freckles in unusual places, such as under the arms and in the groin, colored bumps on the iris (Lisch nodules) and Neurofibromas.

NICOLE PAJER FOR THE BOSTON GLOBE Clockwise from top left: Cast members of the Venice Beach Freakshow include Miss Sunshine, Jessa, the bearded lady, the show’s owner, Todd Ray, Larry the Wolf Boy, Gabriel, the smallest man in America, and Ali and Matt, the littlest married couple. What inspired your fascination with the sideshow world? When I was 12, I went to a carnival with my family and I saw this guy, Otis Jordan. Tell us about some of the performers that people may see hanging around at the freakshow. We also have Larry the Wolf Boy who is in the Guinness Book of World Records as the hairiest man alive.

Freakshow is an American unscripted reality documentary television series from AMC that chronicles the operations of former music producer Todd Ray's Venice Beach Freakshow.

The series premiered on February 14, 2013, preceded by the mid-season premiere of Comic Book Men and followed by the series premiere of Immortalized.

Today, with the enthusiastic participation of wife Danielle, teenage son Phoenix and daughter Asia, 20 - along with their extended family of wondrous exhibitionists - Ray is the impresario of a freak show on the boardwalk of Venice Beach, California.