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Michael Moore

Michael MooreAKA Michael Francis Moore

Born: 23-Apr-1954
Birthplace: Davison, MI

Gender: Male
Religion: Roman Catholic
Race or Ethnicity: White
Sexual orientation: Straight
Occupation: Film Director
Party Affiliation: Democratic

Nationality: United States
Executive summary: Fahrenheit 9/11

Michael Moore grew up in a suburb of Flint, Michigan, which was then home to a GM factory. He is an Eagle Scout, and a lifetime member of the National Rifle Association. He claims to have never smoked marijuana. He was elected to the local school board in 1972 at age 18. Moore wrote for Flint's alternative weekly, the Flint Voice, and was promoted to editor. Under his leadership, the paper expanded its coverage and changed its name to Michigan Voice. He was subsequently offered a job editing Mother Jones. As editor, Moore immediately called a meeting of senior staff and announced that nothing in the previous three issues of the magazine would have made the cut under his tenure. He was fired after refusing to publish an inaccurate, and vaguely Reaganesque article criticizing the Sandanistas in Nicaragua. Moore sued for breach of contract, settled out of court. Moore went to work for Ralph Nader. They did not get along well, and Moore soon returned to Flint.

Here he used his payout from Mother Jones to underwrite his first movie, Roger & Me, a cynical look at what happened to his hometown when its economy was shat upon. The film's title refers to Moore's long-running attempts to corner GM CEO Roger Smith for an interview. In the same wiseass populist style, he made TV Nation, an anti-60 Minutes news magazine as off the wall as Ed Bradley is stoic. The show drew reasonable ratings, but ongoing segments such as "Crackers the Corporate Crime Fighting Chicken" made network executives wince. It was a joint production of BBC and NBC, and ran in America on NBC for half a season before being axed. It was resurrected for a short run on Fox, where again the ratings were good but the politics were wrong. Moore later had a similarly sarcastic show titled The Awful Truth, which was funded by Britain's Channel 4 and ran in America on Bravo.

His mainstream fictional film, Canadian Bacon, was a comedy about war between the U.S. and Canada, but was not widely released. Moore's documentaries, however, have continued generating conversation and decent ticket and video sales. Bowling for Columbine, Moore's look at gun violence and America's infatuation with weapons, won the Oscar for Best Documentary of 2002. The awards ceremony took place just weeks before America's 2003 invasion of Iraq, and to the dismay of organizers Moore seized the moment to lecture the television audience. He invited the other nominated filmmakers to accompany him to the stage, and when he won he made his award into another Michael Moore message. Many people were not amused, but in retrospect, Moore was right -- the war was sold using fictitious reasons. Moore's 2004 film, Fahrenheit 9/11, pointedly lampooned President George W. Bush's close connections to the family of Osama bin Laden. It won the Palme d'Or at the Cannes Film Festival, but because of Moore's insistence that it be considered under the Best Picture and not Best Documentary Oscar, was excluded from the Academy Awards possibility.

Ray Bradbury, author of the classic novel Fahrenheit 451, called Moore "a screwed asshole" and "a horrible human being -- horrible human". Bradbury, a well-known conservative, said politics had "nothing to do with it", that he was angry because Moore's movie had aped Bradbury's title.

Moore's critics posit that Moore is un-American, which for them seems to be a synonym for un-Republican. They write feature-length articles parsing a sentence or two he's spoken on film, or argue that certain scenes may have been recreated after the fact. His interviews, they say, are edited to let Moore win the arguments. Possibly, but these are the same tactics used by Fox News. Moore makes movies, not legal documents, and they are his perspectives, not "objective journalism". The debunkers do not generally attack his central themes. He has said his staff vetted every line, every word in Fahrenheit 9/11, and that anyone can disagree with his opinions, but the facts as presented are facts. Nobody has yet won a lawsuit claiming Moore had his facts wrong.

In 2003, though, the brother of Oklahoma City bomber Terry Nichols, James Nichols, filed suit against Moore. Nichols alleged he was tricked into appearing in Bowling for Columbine, and he accused Moore of libel, defamation of character, invasion of privacy, and intentional infliction of emotional distress. A judge dismissed the suit in July 2005.

Father: Frank
Mother: Veronica (d. Jul-2002)
Sister: Anna
Sister: Veronica
Wife: Kathleen Glynn (m. 1991, div. 2014)
Daughter: Natalie (stepdaughter)

    High School: Davison High School, Davison, MI (1972)
    University: University of Michigan, Flint, MI (briefly, dropped out)

    Mother Jones Editor (former), and Columnist (former)
    Bradley Manning Support Network Advisory Board (2010)
    Center for Justice & Democracy Board of Advisors
    National Rifle Association lifelong member
    Emmy 1995 Outstanding Informational Series for TV Nation (shared)
    Oscar for Best Documentary 2003 for Bowling for Columbine (shared)
    Eagle Scout
    Irish Ancestry
    Risk Factors: Obesity

    TV Nation
    The Awful Truth

    Fahrenheit 11/9 (6-Sep-2018)
    Michael Moore in TrumpLand (18-Oct-2016)
    Where to Invade Next (10-Sep-2015)
    Capitalism: A Love Story (6-Sep-2009)
    Slacker Uprising (27-Sep-2007)
    Sicko (19-May-2007)
    Fahrenheit 9/11 (17-May-2004)
    Bowling for Columbine (15-May-2002)
    The Big One (6-Sep-1997)
    Canadian Bacon (22-Sep-1995)
    Pets or Meat: The Return to Flint (11-Sep-1992)
    Roger & Me (9-Sep-1989)

    Fahrenheit 11/9 (6-Sep-2018) · Himself
    Michael Moore in TrumpLand (18-Oct-2016) · Himself
    Where to Invade Next (10-Sep-2015) · Himself
    Capitalism: A Love Story (6-Sep-2009) · Himself
    Slacker Uprising (27-Sep-2007) · Himself
    Sicko (19-May-2007) · Himself
    Manufacturing Dissent (11-Feb-2007) · Himself
    The Fever (24-Sep-2004)
    Fahrenheit 9/11 (17-May-2004) · Himself
    Orwell Rolls in His Grave (23-Oct-2003) · Himself
    The Corporation (10-Sep-2003) · Himself
    The Yes Men (7-Sep-2003) · Himself
    Bowling for Columbine (15-May-2002) · Himself
    Last Party 2000 (2-Nov-2001) · Himself
    Lucky Numbers (24-Oct-2000)
    Ed TV (26-Mar-1999) · Panel Member
    The Big One (6-Sep-1997) · Himself
    Canadian Bacon (22-Sep-1995) · Redneck Guy #2
    Pets or Meat: The Return to Flint (11-Sep-1992) · Himself
    Blood in the Face (27-Feb-1991)
    Roger & Me (9-Sep-1989) · Himself

Official Website:

Author of books:
Adventures in a TV Nation (1998)
Downsize This! Random Threats from an Unarmed American (1998)
Stupid White Men... and Other Sorry Excuses for the State of the Nation! (2002)
Dude, Where's My Country? (2003)
Here Comes Trouble: Stories from My Life (2011, memoir)

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