The Obama campaign paid at least $345,000 to commission the official Obama documentary, “The Road We’ve Traveled.” That amounts to about $20,300 for each minute of the movie. What’s crazy: Documentary director Davis Guggenheim gave Obama a reduced rate. The privilege to direct such an important work was compensation enough for him!
The Daily Caller explains that the dollar details are still a little fuzzy:
It is likely that there are additional costs associated with the documentary, such as advertising and promotional expenses, but Obama for America … would not comment on that possibility.
[Obama campaign deputy press secretary Katie] Hogan did tell the Daily Caller on Wednesday that Guggenheim had approached the Obama campaign and asked if there was anything he could do to help with President Obama’s reelection bid.
Hogan also wouldn’t say whether payments to Tom Hanks, who narrated the film, were included in the media production costs disclosed to the FEC. Messages left with the agency representing Hanks — Creative Artists Agency in Los Angeles — were not immediately returned. …
The Obama campaign’s FEC filings raised additional questions, however, since the address listed on the campaign finance disclosures for “Guggenheim Short Film” is actually the home of Guggenheim Productions, Inc. — owned and operated by Guggenheim’s sister, Grace.
Grace Guggenheim told The Daily Caller on Wednesday that Obama for America wrongfully sent her company a “Form 1099″ tax declaration in connection with the payments to her brother. She said her own production company did not receive payments and were not involved in any aspect of the Obama documentary.
The film debuts tonight on BarackObama.com — and I’m sure you’re all just holding your breath in anticipation. Seriously, does over-the-top propaganda like this really work on anybody? As wary as I am of the Obama campaign’s seemingly savvy attack ads, I’m amused by efforts like this one. Human beings are wired to believe the worst, so attack ads often work. We’re ultra-attuned to potential threats, and, while we might occasionally be susceptible to hero-worship, we’re generally skeptical that anyone is perfect. Obama’s aura of perfection dissipated ages ago, as his low approval ratings prove.
Guggenheim’s admission that he couldn’t find anything negative to put in the documentary is nothing but fodder for fun-making — and, in fact, the Republican National Committee responded to the documentary with this mock movie poster that riffs Guggenheim’s outrageous praise of Obama:
Ah yes, it is good to be Obama, isn’t it?