HBO’s Sheila Nevins kicked off Monday night’s celebs-only screening of “Elaine Stritch at Liberty” by sharing the usual Elaine Stritch-is-a-perfectionist anecdote.

It seems that during a meal at Centro Lire, the legit legend sent a glass of Diet Coke back to the kitchen four or five times before the tony restaurant got it right.

Stritch says she doesn’t mind hearing these stories told in public. But even she has her limits. The HBO docu includes her Tony acceptance speech but not the part where she screamed, “Don’t do this to me!” as CBS cut to a commercial.

Post-screening, Stritch made excuses for the evening’s three co-hosts, none of whom showed up Monday : Nathan Lane (“too famous”), Hugh Jackman (“it’s his night off”) and Stephen Sondheim (“he said he couldn’t bare to hear ‘Ladies Who Lunch’ one more time”). From there, a few dozen guests, including Glenn Close and Steve Buscemi, broke for supper at the Carlyle.