HBO just can’t help themselves. Less than two weeks after the pay television giant announced Julianne Moore, 50, will play a 43 year old Sarah Palin during the 2008 Presidential election, the network announced its intentions to make another anti-GOP movie based on the 2008 Barton Gellman book, Angler: The Cheney Vice Presidency as well as The Dark Side, a 2006 documentary which aired on Frontline, a PBS public affairs series.
There is no argument that Gellman’s book casts a very dark and negative shadow over Republican Vice President, Dick Cheney. His own website describes the book as taking on “the full scope of Cheney’s work and its consequences, including his hidden role in the Bush administration’s most fateful choices in war: shifting focus from al Qaeda to Iraq, unleashing the National Security Agency to spy at home, and promoting ‘cruel and inhuman’ methods of interrogation.” If you didn’t know any better, you might think that description fits a member of the KGB, or even the Gestapo.
The Dark Side, not to be confused with the UK horror film publication or as the general concept of evil in the Star Wars universe or the anthology horror TV series produced by George A. Romero or the DC comics supervillain, no The Dark Side is a documentary produced by David Fanning and Michael Kirk of Frontline. The title of the documentary perverts a quote from Cheney a few days after the 9/11 attacks in which he stated that in order to defend America against future Osama bin Laden and al Queda attacks, we would have to work “sort of the dark side, if you will,” because, “That’s the world these folks operate in…” and depicts the struggle between the CIA and the vice president and how Cheney was the chief architect of the war on terror and invasion of Iraq.
HBO optioned the book for the mini-series, which should air just before the 2012 election. Naturally, David Fanning and Michael Kirk of Frontline are slated as Executive Producers. Also, listed as Executive Producers are Jeffrey Levine and David Kennedy of Fair Catch Productions, a company the California Secretary of State currently shows as “suspended.” Who are the rest of the players?
Eric Kessler (Co-President of HBO) – Gave $2,300 to Obama for America
Richard Plepler (Co-President of HBO) – Contributed over $15,000 to Democrats in 2008, including $2,300 to Obama for America and another $500 to Obama for America
Sue Naegle (President of HBO Entertainment) – Gave $2,500 to Al Franken for Senate and $1,150 to Friends of Rahm Emanuel, who would later be Obama Chief of Staff
Len Amato (President of HBO Films) – Gave $500 to Obama for America in 2008
Paula Weinstein (Executive Producer) – Donated over $20,000 to Democrat candidates and organizations including John Edwards, Barbara Boxer, Barack Obama, MoveOn.org and the DNC in just the last three years.
Barton Gellman (Writer) – $500 to Democrat Bruce Babbitt in 1987; Writer of Angler: The Cheney Vice Presidency
Rick Cleveland (Screenwriter) – $500 to Howard Dean in 2003 and $1,000 to John Kerry in 2004; worked with Aaron Sorkin, an ardent Democrat who has donated nearly a quarter million dollars in a little over a decade to Democrats and their committees.
This is not much different from HBO’s team on Game Change, where there was not one Republican among the whole bunch. How can they possibly be trusted to make an unbiased political film that is set to air right before the 2012 election? Quite simply, they can’t.
Frankly, HBO is quickly becoming the MSNBC of premium television. What’s next from the network that brings you Bill Maher? I wouldn’t be surprised if in two more weeks they greenlit John Wilkes Booth: An American Hero.
In the meantime, I suggest you cancel your subscription to HBO.