Saturday, June 26, 2004
Did The Times Censor Michael Moore?
A quote from a review by "At The Movies with Roger Ebert" co-host Richard Roeper has been mysteriously altered from the advertisements in The New York Times. Last week, Roeper's quote read: "A powerful, fascinating piece of filmmaking...everybody in the country should go see this film!" Friday's Times cut it down to "A powerful, fascinating piece of filmmaking...see this film!"
A few days ago the Fox News Empire and sordid associates began complaining about the ads for the film and how they might be in violation of the campaign finance laws. One Republican group even registered an official complaint about it. Of course, they didn't want to ban the film. They just wanted to make it harder for it to reach a mainstream audience.
So the change in the advertisement couldn't possibly be accidental (although it would qualify as moronic since "everybody in the country should go see this film" is almost a cliche when it comes to most movie posters). The only question is who ordered this change? Miramax, Michael Moore's people or the editorial staff of The New York Times?
As I write this, unofficial box office tallies are touting "Fahrenheit 9/11" as the number one film on Friday, earning a gross of more than eight million dollars. My guess is that the numbers will reach thirty million by the end of the weekend, and wind up somewhere in between eighty and one hundred million for domestic ticket sales.