IS Forum
Forum Index Register Members List Events Mark Forums Read Help

Go Back   International Skeptics Forum » General Topics » USA Politics
 


Welcome to the International Skeptics Forum, where we discuss skepticism, critical thinking, the paranormal and science in a friendly but lively way. You are currently viewing the forum as a guest, which means you are missing out on discussing matters that are of interest to you. Please consider registering so you can gain full use of the forum features and interact with other Members. Registration is simple, fast and free! Click here to register today.
Tags newsletter , michael moore , disney

Reply
Old 9th May 2004, 05:34 AM   #1
shemp
a flimsy character...perfidious and despised
 
shemp's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: People's Democratic Republic of Planet X
Posts: 40,240
Michael Moore's latest newsletter (in which he airs out his side of the Disney thang)

Since most of you probably don't subscribe to Michael Moore's newsletter, here's his latest one, with his side of the Disney controversy. I vouch not for any facts or lack thereof, I simply want to share this with you.

(The opinions expessed below do not necessarily represent those of the James Randi Educational Foundation, The Church of Shemp(TM), or any animate or inanimate object. They are presented for informational and entertainment purposes only. Please, no wagering.)

Quote:
When You Wish Upon A Star... by Michael Moore

May 7th, 2004

Friends,

Thank you for all the incredible letters of support as my film crew and I once again slog our way through the corporate media madhouse. Does it ever end? Are we ever going to get control of our "free press" again? Can you wish upon a star?

The Disney spin machine has been working overtime dealing with this censorship debacle of theirs. I don't think they thought they would ever be outed. After all, they know that all of us are supposed to adhere to the unwritten Hollywood Code: Never tell the public how business is done here, never let them have a peek at the man behind the curtain.

Disney has been hoping for nearly a year that they could keep this thing quiet. As I promised on Wednesday, here are the details behind my sordid adventure with the Magic Kingdom:

In April of 2003, I signed a deal with Miramax, a division of the Walt Disney Co., to finance and distribute my next movie, Fahrenheit 9/11. (The original financier had backed out; I will tell that story at a later date.) In my contract it is stated that Miramax will distribute my film in the U.S. through Disney's distribution arm, Buena Vista Distribution. It also gives Miramax the rights to distribute and sell the movie around the world.

A month later, after shooting started, Michael Eisner insisted on meeting with my agent, Ari Emanuel. Eisner was furious that Miramax signed this deal with me. According to Mr. Emanuel, Eisner said he would never let my film be distributed through Disney even though Mr. Eisner had not seen any footage or even read the outline of the film. Eisner told my agent that he did not want to anger Jeb Bush, the governor of Florida. The movie, he believed, would complicate an already complicated situation with current and future Disney projects in Florida, and that many millions of dollars of tax breaks and incentives were at stake.

But Michael Eisner did not call Miramax and tell them to stop my film. Not only that, for the next year, SIX MILLION dollars of DISNEY money continued to flow into the production of making my movie. Miramax assured me that there were no distribution problems with my film.

But then, a few weeks ago when Fahrenheit 9/11 was selected to be in the Cannes Film Festival, Disney sent a low-level production executive to New York to watch the film (to this day, Michael Eisner has not seen the film). This exec was enthusiastic throughout the viewing. He laughed, he cried and at the end he thanked us. "This film is explosive," he exclaimed, and we took that as a positive sign. But "explosive" for these guys is only a good word when it comes to blowing up things in movies. OUR kind of "explosive" is what they want to run from as fast as they can.

Miramax did their best to convince Disney to go ahead as planned with our film. Disney contractually can only stop Miramax from releasing a film if it has received an NC-17 rating (ours will be rated PG-13 or R).

According to yesterday's New York Times, the issue of whether to release Fahrenheit 9/11 was discussed at Disney's board meeting last week. It was decided that Disney should not distribute our movie.

Earlier this week we got the final, official call: Disney will not put out Fahrenheit 9/11. When the story broke in the New York Times, Disney, instead of telling the truth, turned into Pinocchio.

Here are my favorite nuggets that have come out of the mouths of their spinmeisters (roughly quoted):

"Michael Moore has known for a year that we will not distribute this movie, so this is not news." Yes, that is what I thought, too, except Disney kept sending us all that money to make the movie. Miramax said there was no problem. I got the idea that everything was fine.

"It is not in the best interests of our company to distribute a partisan political film that may offend some of our customers." Hmmm. Disney doesn't distribute work that has partisan politics? Disney distributes and syndicates the Sean Hannity radio show every day? I get to listen to Rush Limbaugh every day on Disney-owned WABC. I also seem to remember that Disney distributed a very partisan political movie during a Congressional election year, 1998?a film called The Big One... by, um... ME!

"Fahrenheit 9/11 is not the Disney brand; we put out family oriented films." So true. That's why the #1 Disney film in theaters right now is a film called, KILL BILL, VOL. 2. This excellent Miramax film, along with other classics like Pulp Fiction, have all been distributed by Disney. That's why Miramax exists -- to provide an ALTERNATIVE to the usual Disney fare. And, unless they were NC-17, Disney has distributed them.

"Mr. Moore is doing this as a publicity stunt." Michael Eisner reportedly said this the other day while he was at a publicity stunt cutting the ribbon for the new "Tower of Terror" ride (what a pleasant name considering what the country has gone through recently) at Disney's California Adventure Park. Let me tell you something: NO filmmaker wants to go through this kind of controversy. It does NOT sell tickets (I can cite many examples of movies who have had to change distributors at the last minute and all have failed). I made this movie so people could see it as soon as possible. This is a huge and unwanted distraction. I want people discussing the issues raised in my film, not some inside Hollywood fracas surrounding who is going to ship the prints to the theaters. Plus, I think it is fairly safe to say that Fahrenheit 9/11 has a good chance of doing just fine, considering that my last movie set a box office record and the subject matter (Bush, the War on Terror, the War in Iraq) is at the forefront of most people's minds.

So what will happen to my movie? I still don't know. What I do know is that I will make sure all of you see it by hook or crook. We are Americans. There are a lot of screwed up things about us right now, but one thing that most of us have in common is that we don't like someone telling us we can't see something. We despise censors, and the worst censors are those who would dare to limit thoughts and ideas and silence dissent. THAT is un-American. If I have to travel across the country and show it in city parks (or, as one person offered yesterday, to show it on the side of his house for the neighborhood to see), that is what I will do.

More to come, stay tuned.

Yours,

Michael Moore
http://www.michaelmoore.com
mmflint@aol.com

P.S. Be sure to check out yesterday's New York Times Editorial, "Disney's Craven Behavior"

http://www.nytimes.com/2004/05/06/op...partner=GOOGLE
__________________
If being a twat was a TV show, Trump would be the boxed set.
"...just as a magnet attracts iron filings, Trump shemp attracts, and is attracted to, louts." - George Will
"[shemp is] a most notable coward, an infinite and endless liar, an hourly promise breaker, the owner of no one good quality." - Shakespeare
shemp is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th May 2004, 05:46 AM   #2
Mr Manifesto
Illuminator
 
Join Date: Apr 2003
Posts: 4,815
I'm a bit confused. It may be that I don't know the American ratings system. But I thought that, in order of most-family-friendly to least-family friendly, the ratings would be:

G
NC-17
R

Have I got this right? If so, why would they not carry a movie that's NC-17, but carry one that's R?
Mr Manifesto is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th May 2004, 05:50 AM   #3
WildCat
NWO Master Conspirator
 
WildCat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 59,856
Why do I keep hearing Nancy Kerrigan shreiking "Whyyyy, whyyyy" when I read that?

Moore has a deep-rooted need to be a victim here. It's also a publicity stunt to feed his Barbara-Streisand sized ego. Anyone who is familiar w/ Disney films knows this is not the kind of stuff they put out.

Moore will just end up finding another distributor to buy it back from Miramax. Miramax makes $$ w/o having to take the criticism, and Moore gets to peddle another self-serving "documentary" to a gullible public. Maybe his next film will be about how evil 'publicans are keeping flying saucers under wraps because they could solve the world's energy problems but only by putting oil companies out of business.

BTW, is that really you Shemp?
__________________
Vive la liberté!
WildCat is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th May 2004, 05:52 AM   #4
WildCat
NWO Master Conspirator
 
WildCat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 59,856
Quote:
Originally posted by Mr Manifesto
I'm a bit confused. It may be that I don't know the American ratings system. But I thought that, in order of most-family-friendly to least-family friendly, the ratings would be:

G
NC-17
R

Have I got this right? If so, why would they not carry a movie that's NC-17, but carry one that's R?
It goes like this:
G - General audiences
R - Restricted, no one under 17 admitted w/o a parent.
NC-17 - No one under 17 admitted.
__________________
Vive la liberté!
WildCat is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th May 2004, 06:17 AM   #5
shemp
a flimsy character...perfidious and despised
 
shemp's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: People's Democratic Republic of Planet X
Posts: 40,240
Quote:
Originally posted by WildCat BTW, is that really you Shemp?
No, it's the ghost of Joe Besser. Of course it's me! What do I look like, some kind of moron? (Don't answer that.)
__________________
If being a twat was a TV show, Trump would be the boxed set.
"...just as a magnet attracts iron filings, Trump shemp attracts, and is attracted to, louts." - George Will
"[shemp is] a most notable coward, an infinite and endless liar, an hourly promise breaker, the owner of no one good quality." - Shakespeare
shemp is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th May 2004, 07:08 AM   #6
Dorian Gray
Hypocrisy Detector
 
Dorian Gray's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2002
Posts: 20,363
Quote:
Moore has a deep-rooted need to be a victim here. It's also a publicity stunt to feed his Barbara-Streisand sized ego. Anyone who is familiar w/ Disney films knows this is not the kind of stuff they put out.
Not the kind of stuff they put out? Did you read where they produce Hannity and Limbaugh? That covers political. Did you read where they put out Kill Bill and Pulp Fiction and another Moore movie? That covers family entertainment, and that covers Moore specifically. So now, let me ask you - does it hurt when you talk out your ass?

BTW, it goes:
G - anyone can see this.
PG - anyone can see this, but it's not for little kids.
PG-13 - Anyone over 13 can see this; anyone under 13 has to have a parent with them.
R - Anyone over 17 can see this; anyone under 17 has to have a parent with them.
NC17 - Anyone over 17 can see this; no one under 17 is admitted.
X - Used to mean the same as NC17 until the porn industry took it over; there's no plot and lots of sexual intercourse.
Dorian Gray is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th May 2004, 07:35 AM   #7
specious_reasons
Graduate Poster
 
Join Date: Jul 2002
Posts: 1,124
Quote:
Originally posted by Dorian Gray
Not the kind of stuff they put out? Did you read where they produce Hannity and Limbaugh? That covers political. Did you read where they put out Kill Bill and Pulp Fiction and another Moore movie? That covers family entertainment, and that covers Moore specifically. So now, let me ask you - does it hurt when you talk out your ass?
Technically, Moore is incorrect. "The Big One" was distributed by Miramax, not Buena Vista. His latest movie was to be ditributed by Buena Vista. However, "Kill Bill" - both volumes - were distributed by Buena Vista, along with lots of other "non-family" fare.

http://www.imdb.com/List?substrings=...+vista&&skip=0

However, I couldnt find anything overtly political distributed by Buena Vista after a quick scan of the list.... Easy to miss, though, there's 1600 titles.
specious_reasons is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th May 2004, 07:51 AM   #8
Some Friggin Guy
Muse
 
Join Date: Aug 2003
Posts: 852
While a work of fiction, I would say that Apocalypse Now is fairly overtly political. Granted, that's just my opinion.

Edit to add: So is GI JANE
Some Friggin Guy is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th May 2004, 07:57 AM   #9
RandFan
Mormon Atheist
 
RandFan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Posts: 60,134
Quote:
Are we ever going to get control of our "free press" again?
Freedom of the press belongs to the man who owns one.
--A. J. Liebling
__________________
Ego, ain't it a bitch?
RandFan is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th May 2004, 09:26 AM   #10
WildCat
NWO Master Conspirator
 
WildCat's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 59,856
Quote:
Originally posted by Dorian Gray
Did you read where they put out Kill Bill and Pulp Fiction and another Moore movie? That covers family entertainment, and that covers Moore specifically. So now, let me ask you - does it hurt when you talk out your ass?
Those were silly comedies, macabre yes but comedies nevertheless. Hardly expected to be taken seriously. Moore thinks he's revealing some kind of conspiracy, the kind only tin-foil hat people believe. I don't know who owns who any more with the constant buyouts and mergers in the entertainment industry nowadays, but Disney can release what they want and not release what they don't want. End of story.
__________________
Vive la liberté!
WildCat is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th May 2004, 10:19 PM   #11
Jas
Illuminator
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Posts: 3,829
Quote:
In April of 2003, I signed a deal with Miramax, a division of the Walt Disney Co., to finance and distribute my next movie, Fahrenheit 9/11. (The original financier had backed out; I will tell that story at a later date.) In my contract it is stated that Miramax will distribute my film in the U.S. through Disney's distribution arm, Buena Vista Distribution. It also gives Miramax the rights to distribute and sell the movie around the world.
So if a contract was signed which stated that Disney/Miramax/Buena Vista/whatever would distribute the film, why is M. Moore not fighting this in court, instead of sending out conspiracy newsletters?
Jas is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th May 2004, 11:41 PM   #12
corplinx
JREF Kid
 
corplinx's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Posts: 8,952
Quote:
"Michael Moore has known for a year that we will not distribute this movie, so this is not news." Yes, that is what I thought, too, except Disney kept sending us all that money to make the movie. Miramax said there was no problem. I got the idea that everything was fine.


This was of course an email sent from him to his followers to keep them in line. They keep their stories straight when the go around the net defening him on message boards and blogs.

Can anyone point out why I think this statement is BS?
__________________
Nothing Reportable Here
corplinx is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 9th May 2004, 11:49 PM   #13
Fordama
Thinker
 
Fordama's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 227
[quote] According to Mr. Emanuel, Eisner said he would never let my film be distributed through Disney even though Mr. Eisner had not seen any footage or even read the outline of the film.[/i]I'm missing something? Moore knows they aren't going to distribute the movie a month into shooting.

So why the indignation?

Fordama
__________________
There's a million fine looking women in the world, dude. But, they don't all bring you lasagna at work.
Fordama is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 10th May 2004, 05:16 AM   #14
AtheistArchon
Muse
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Posts: 589
- Hm, I'm no Moore fanboy, but I do get the overall feeling that Disney simply backpeddaled at the last minute. There's no good moral reason for them not to distribute it, even though there are perfectly good business reasons for them not to. Problem is, they're not using business reasons publically, they're trying to take the high road.

- And besides, I want to see F:9/11. I'm intelligent and skeptical enough not to be taken in by Moore's BS, but however much BS he projects, there are still heavy things to think about in his work.
AtheistArchon is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 10th May 2004, 06:48 AM   #15
Snide
Illuminator
 
Snide's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2001
Posts: 3,196
Quote:
Originally posted by Dorian Gray

PG-13 - Anyone over 13 can see this; anyone under 13 has to have a parent with them.
Actually, anyone is allowed, they're just saying that parents are "strongly cautioned," as "some material may be inappropriate for children under 13."

Other points well-taken.

Edited to add: And I've just learned (I didn't even know this, despite my past as a movie theatre usher): NC-17 means 17 and under are not allowed. Maybe that changed since "Bolero." (??)

Source
Snide is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 10th May 2004, 08:34 AM   #16
corplinx
JREF Kid
 
corplinx's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Posts: 8,952
Quote:
Originally posted by AtheistArchon
- Hm, I'm no Moore fanboy, but I do get the overall feeling that Disney simply backpeddaled at the last minute. There's no good moral reason for them not to distribute it, even though there are perfectly good business reasons for them not to.
If you want to see a good documentary, go see "Super Size". Some people have seen Farenheit and say it is heavy on talking about the Bush Family and their ties to the Saudi Royal family. In other words, it would be the first conspiracy flick documentary bueno vista has distributed. _If_ the early leaks about this film are true, then you can guess what Michael Eisner thought when he read a summary of it.
__________________
Nothing Reportable Here
corplinx is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 10th May 2004, 08:42 AM   #17
Ed
Philosopher
 
Join Date: Aug 2001
Posts: 8,658
Disney see a financial downside to distributing the film. So? If there is a contractual thing, Moore should sue. Otherwise it is business. Don't get the big deal.
Ed is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 10th May 2004, 12:25 PM   #18
Skeptic
Banned
 
Join Date: Jul 2001
Posts: 18,312
(Big yawn...)

If Moore actually HAD a contract and Miramax backed out of it, then he would be suing their a$$ for breach of contract.

And if you are, or are considering, suing someone like that, the first thing you do is shut the (bleep) up about them in public, and certainly not make public statements accusing the defendants of evil conspiracies with high-ranking politicians.

Since he ISN'T suing, or even mentions such action, and he IS spinning a conspiracy theory for his fan base, (of the "oh poor innocent me--quick, buy tickets and see this movie!" sort) I say it's BS.

But then again, we are talking of people who actually believe him when he says:

Let me tell you something: NO filmmaker wants to go through this kind of controversy. It does NOT sell tickets.

Er.... sure, Michael. I mean, controversy helping ticket sales??? Preposterous! Who ever heard of such a thing?

(Got a bridge to sell us, too?)
Skeptic is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Old 10th May 2004, 01:05 PM   #19
Rob Lister
Guest
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Posts: 8,504
I'm pretty sure there is a conspiracy. It involves Miramax and Moore. This is promotion. Free promotion.
Rob Lister is offline   Quote this post in a PM   Nominate this post for this month's language award Copy a direct link to this post Reply With Quote Back to Top
Reply

International Skeptics Forum » General Topics » USA Politics

Bookmarks

Thread Tools

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Forum Jump


All times are GMT -7. The time now is 06:09 PM.
Powered by vBulletin. Copyright ©2000 - 2021, Jelsoft Enterprises Ltd.

This forum began as part of the James Randi Education Foundation (JREF). However, the forum now exists as
an independent entity with no affiliation with or endorsement by the JREF, including the section in reference to "JREF" topics.

Disclaimer: Messages posted in the Forum are solely the opinion of their authors.