Saturday, May 12, 2012

Wisconsin Filmmaker Rides Wave of Pre-Preview Publicity

Can Brad Lichtenstein do for Janesville, WI what Michael Moore did for Flint, MI? That's still to be determined. But the filmmaker is off to a roaring start ahead of his May 16th mini-preview Q&A event in Milwaukee thanks to an explosive bit of video involving Governor Scott Walker.

The 2011-recorded Walker clip can be directly viewed here. It is also included in the ten-minute preview of Lichtenstein's As Goes Janesville below. Just like Flint, the closing of a GM plant sparked the downward spiral in Janesville.

On his blog, Lichtenstein retraces how the May 10th release of the above video triggered a viral frenzy as the media zeroed in on Walker's “divide and conquer” remark. The politician delivered what has also quickly become a June 5, 2012 recall election flashpoint while speaking last year about the state's labor unions to billionaire supporter Diane Hendricks (!). It's an explosive, captured moment, made all the more incendiary because it was recorded just ahead of the February 2011 Wisconsin protests.

Lichtenstein's latest documentary is scheduled to air this fall on PBS' Independent Lens. He is also planning to launch a transmedia component, bizVizz, which will allow users to peruse catalogued information about Wisconsin company tax payments and employment records.

At press time, the award-winning documentary filmmaker is having fun actively re-tweeting the latest bits of news coverage of his instant-classic snapshot of an elected official reassuring a concerned one-percenter. Via Twitter, Lichtenstein also urged Green Bay FOX affiliate WLUK-TV to "watch the whole As Goes Janesville trailer" or call him directly before dismissing him as a partisan. It's getting more Michael Moore-sian by the second.

[371 Productions]

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