‘2016: Obama’s America’ Filmmakers Making Follow-Up Film

‘2016: Obama’s America’ Filmmakers Making Follow-Up Film (Exclusive)

11:55 AM PDT 3/16/2013 by Paul Bond
2016: Obama's America Poster - H 2012
‘2016: Obama’s America’ poster

Gerald Molen, the Oscar-winning producer of “Schindler’s List,” “Jurassic Park” and other blockbusters, is re-teaming with conservative commentator Dinesh D’Souza for a movie simply called “America.”

The filmmakers behind 2016: Obama’s America are working on a follow-up to what has become the second-biggest political documentary in the history of the domestic box office, The Hollywood Reporter has learned exclusively.

Conservative commentator Dinesh D’Souza, who starred in, co-wrote and co-directed 2016, will return as the writer and star of a film simply titled America to be directed by John Sullivan, who wrote and directed 2016 with D’Souza.

Gerald Molen, who won a best picture Oscar for producing Schindler’s List with Steven Spielberg in 1993, will executive produce America, as he did for 2016.

 2016 shocked some industry watchers in 2012 by coming seemingly from nowhere, opening on a single screen in Houston, Texas, and spreading to nearly 2,000 screens within two months, eventually earning $33.5 million on a production budget of $2.5 million. The only political documentary to outperform 2016 was Michael Moore’s Fahrenheit 9/11, which made $119.2 million on a production budget of $6 million in 2004.

While 2016 was based on D’Souza’s book The Roots of Obama’s Rage, the new film will not draw from previously known source material, and the filmmakers say America is not technically a sequel to 2016, though audiences may be inclined to view it as such.

In America, D’Souza intends to recreate some famous moments in American history and ask the question: What would the world be like if the U.S. had not existed? He likened America, in fact, toFrank Capra’s 1946 film It’s a Wonderful Life, in which George Bailey learns what his town would have been like had he never lived.

“President Obama looks at America as an oppressive force,” D’Souza said, “while I and millions of others around the world have a different view – that America has been a great blessing to its own people and to the world.”

 

In 2016, D’Souza travels to Nairobi to interview President Barack Obama‘s half brother, George Obama, and the trek and resulting video proved a marketing bonanza for the film. For America, D’Souza, Molen and company have other tricks up their sleeves, though none they are ready to reveal.

“We intend to provide both serious answers and have some fun as we take Obama’s dreams for America to their logical conclusions,” D’Souza says.

D’Souza and his filmmaking partners plan to formally announce America on Saturday in Washington, DC, at the Conservative Political Action Conference, which began Thursday and included presentations from Mitt RomneySarah PalinDonald TrumpPaul RyanRand PaulAnn Coulter and others.

D’Souza also plans on unveiling the trailer for America at CPAC.

While the success of 2016 cannot be disputed, it could be the exception to the rule, as filmmakers have found it difficult to generate box-office returns with political documentaries. Several conservative efforts that followed 2016 stalled. Hating Breitbart, a film about deceased commentator Andrew Breitbart, earned only $81,000 in October, though it could eventually turn a profit, as it is being re-cut and re-released by FreeStyle Releasing on May 17 both theatrically and on DVD. Likewise, Occupy Unmasked, a right-wing look at the Occupy Wall Street movement, made just $53,000 when it was released in October by Mark Cuban’s Magnet Releasing, though the film also made revenue by way of VOD and DVD.

D’Souza says America should make its way into theaters by the middle of next year, an advantageous time as Americans turn their attention toward politics again due to the midterm elections, when all 435 seats in the U.S. House of Representatives are up for grabs, as are 33 seats in the Senate.

 

 

‘2016’ Oscar Snub Has Filmmakers Claiming Political Bias

‘2016’ Oscar Snub Has Filmmakers Claiming Political Bias

3:08 PM PST 12/4/2012 by Paul Bond
2016: Obama's America Poster - H 2012

Gerald Molen, who produced the Academy Award-winning ‘Schindler’s List,’ said the box-office success of the anti-Obama documentary proves the film was a hit: “The action confirms my opinion that the bias against anything from a conservative point of view is dead on arrival in Hollywood.”

Gerald Molen, the Oscar-winning producer of Schindler’s List, is claiming political bias because a documentary movie he produced this year isn’t up for an Oscar, even though that film, 2016: Obama’s America, made more money at the box office than the combined earning of the 15 films the Academy deemed eligible.

2016, a negative take on President Barack Obama co-written and directed by author Dinesh D’Souza, earned $33.4 million at the domestic box office. But its omission on the list of the 15 documentaries the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences said Monday would advance in the voting process makes it ineligible for an Oscar.

“Dinesh warned me this might happen,” Molen said with a laugh Tuesday. “The action confirms my opinion that the bias against anything from a conservative point of view is dead on arrival in Hollywood circles. The film’s outstanding success means that America went to see the documentary in spite of how Hollywood feels about it.”

 

D’Souza echoed his producer’s words.

“I want to thank the Academy for not nominating our film,” D’Souza joked. “By ignoring 2016, the top-performing box-office hit of 2012, and pretending that films like Searching for Sugar Man and This Is Not a Film are more deserving of an Oscar, our friends in Hollywood have removed any doubt average Americans may have had that liberal political ideology, not excellence, is the true standard of what receives awards.”

The documentaries from 2012 that the Academy has deemed Oscar-worthy besides Sugar Man and Not a Film are Ai Weiwei: Never Sorry, Bully, Chasing Ice, Detropia, Ethel, 5 Broken Cameras, The Gatekeepers, The House I Live In, How to Survive a Plague, The Imposter, The Invisible War, Mea Maxima Culpa: Silence in the House of God and The Waiting Room.

2016: Obama’s America’ Filmmakers Claim Organized Disinformation Campaign

 

 

2016: Obama’s America’ Filmmakers Claim Organized Disinformation Campaign

by Paul Bond

UPDATED: The movie showed up on YouTube over the weekend as rumors spread it would also be shown free on the Fox News Channel.

The filmmakers behind 2016: Obama’s America are claiming a coordinated attack engineered by supporters of Barack Obama to suppress the box-office results of the movie, which is a critical look at the president.

‘2016: Obama’s America’ Filmmaker Calls White House Attack ‘Clumsy,’ ‘Bizarre’

The film, the second-highest-grossing political documentary in U.S. box-office history, has made $32 million domestically since opening in mid July but took in only $938,000 during the recent weekend for a per-screen average of $771, down 27 percent from $1,060 per screen in the previous weekend, according to BoxOfficeMojo. Overall, the movie’s box office dropped 53 percent in the most recent weekend compared with the previous one, its largest decline since opening 10 weeks ago.

While such a drop isn’t unusual for a movie during the course of a week — especially when the theater count dropped from 1,876 to 1,216 — filmmakers nevertheless say box-office results were artificially depressed for two reasons: a disinformation campaign spreading the false rumor that Fox News Channel would be showing the movie in its entirety Sunday and a pirated version of the film showing up on YouTube this weekend.

“Saturday morning, I started getting e-mails from groups and individuals either warning me about the piracy of 2016: Obama’s America or thanking me for allowing the movie to go online,” said Randy Slaughter, president of Rocky Mountain Pictures, the film’s distributor.

Filmmakers said they notified the FBI that the movie was available illegally and that they notified YouTube of a copyright breach, prompting the user to take down the film.

“We take this issue very seriously and are in contact with the FBI to investigate the parties that placed this on the Internet,” said John Sullivan, who co-wrote and co-directed the movie with Dinesh D’Souza.

Concerning the prospect of the film airing on FNC, some websites including SmartGirlPolitics.com, apologized for being a conduit for misinformation.

“Last night we were made aware that someone posted an erroneous blog post on our user blogs regarding the movie 2016 being shown on Fox News,” wrote the website’s president, Stacy Mott. “It was immediately taken down, but unfortunately, a handful of people had already responded to it through Twitter. This was not, in any way, something posted by Smart Girl Politics or any member of our team.”

Over the weekend, there also were mass e-mails making the claim that Fox News was about to air the movie for free.

 “Fox News is going to air the documentary Obama 2016. To all Americans, Democrat, Independents, right or left, heads up for this Sunday night,” one email reads.

“Important. Looks that Fox News is going to air the documentary Obama 2016. Heads up for this Sunday night 9:00 p.m.,” reads another.

A spokesperson for Fox News confirmed the cable channel has no plans to air the movie.

“The reports of the movie appearing on Fox before the election are completely untrue, and we strongly suspect that they are the result of dirty tricks by our opponents who spread this rumor in order to confuse the general public and keep them from going to their local theaters,” sai