Michael Moore wants you! Got any good dirt on Wall Street?
So, you wanna be in pictures? Here's your chance. Oscar-award winning, controversial, documentary filmmaker Michael Moore is looking for a few good whistle blowers.
In a letter posted on his website he makes the pitch, "If you work for a bank, a brokerage firm or an insurance company -- or if you have seen things or heard things that you believe the American people have a right to know -- please contact me."
He even provides his "private email": firstname.lastname@example.org.
Let's start taking bets on what it's going to be called. Here are mine: Dicko (for Lehman Brother's last C.E.O., Dick Fuld), Stupid White Men II, Madoff and Me, Bowling for Bonuses. Or maybe he'll just call it Bonus. That would be a nice, artistic title that sums up what's been driving the Wall Street feeding frenzy that stormed our economy like locusts.
I have my doubts Moore's plea will win over the people with the real dirt. Do quintessential Wall Street types really want to talk to a "flaming liberal" like Moore? The most effective and interesting documentary covering the damnation of Wall Street would be, and this is my open letter to America, to have some budding filmmakers rent out a cigar bar in lower Manhattan, provide free drinks and kobe burgers, invite a bunch of laid-off Wall Street guys, and set the cameras rolling. Voila! You have Confessions of a Laid-off Banker.
Just ask them what they know. These guys aren't going back to finance anytime soon and they're in the same boat as anyone in a position to hire them.
That would be a way more interesting night at the movies than being subjected to Moore's infamous editing. I really can't stomach the thought of a Moore bailout movie trying to manipulate our emotions, make us gape and laugh. We get enough drama from the latest headlines.
I actually got to meet Moore once at UC Davis when I was a student. I helped organize an event where he gave a lecture in a big, fancy performance hall. What I remember most from that day is that he got mad that we didn't get him the kind of pickles specified in his dressingroom requirements. So he or his handlers left the jar in the hallway. Wait, aren't you supposed to be a hero for the working class? Pickles?
In his talk, he told the audience that I said backstage that I couldn't stay for his speech since my teacher doesn't like him. Actually, I apologized that I had to leave his talk early for a midterm. My impression from that day was that he seemed a little overworked and needed a vacation. And my impression from his letter is that we need fresh blood to take up the torch and tell the Wall Street story. A Michael Moore Wall Street documentary is way too predictable to want to watch.
Now's the time for unknown filmmakers to make their mark by beating Moore to the punchline. If you're in Virginia, get on the train to Manhattan. If you're in Wyoming, stop what you're doing and get over here. The story needs to be told in a juicy documentary, he's right about that. Michael Moore can stick to rolling around in his big pile of money and leave this one for somebody who needs a career.
Crisis presents great opportunity, mystery filmmaker. Get out there, rent the bar, and the i-bankers will come. (Don't forget to include me in the credits).