Video: Phelim McAleer and the Gosnell TV movie
posted at 5:01 pm on March 30, 2014 by Ed Morrissey
Remember Kermit Gosnell? Most of the media would like to forget his butchery, even as most of them declined to cover his crimes and his trial, too. Two of our friends refuse to forget, though, and they have launched an Indiegogo project to fund a TV movie about a man they describe as “America’s biggest ever serial killer.” Frack Nation‘s Phelim McAleer and Ann McIlhenny need your help to make sure this story gets told:
The filmmaker, Phelim McAleer, says he will explore not only Gosnell’s actions — he calls Gosnell “America’s biggest serial killer” — but also what he says is the bureaucratic and media inattention that allowed them to continue until his arrest in 2011.
McAleer’s project is to be produced by his Hat Tip Productions as a television movie that he will pitch to various cable TV channels. He’s attempting to raise $2.1 million at IndieGoGo for its financing. If he is successful, his would be the biggest crowdfunding film or TV campaign ever at IndieGoGo.
McAleer is a crowdfunding veteran, having previously raised $212,265 for his movie FrackNation, a documentary that accuses another documentary, Gasland, of numerous factual errors. He surpassed his goal of $150,000 for that film, which was backed by 3,305 Kickstarter contributors, and the movie aired in January on Mark Cuban‘s AXS TV.
The IndieGoGo project can be found at GosnellMovie.com, but that’s a story in itself, as the Hollywood Reporter explains:
McAleer was set to use Kickstarter again for Gosnell, but the firm wanted several changes to the text of the fundraising pitch and, in the end, attached a disclaimer to the project’s letter of acceptance warning that if anything “objectionable” were added the project would be removed. McAleer sent a sternly worded letter to Kickstarter accusing it of “censorship” and moved the campaign for Gosnell to IndieGoGo. Kickstarter says the disclaimer is standard procedure.
Unlike FrackNation and other movies McAleer has produced, the Gosnell movie will be a scripted drama, and he’ll base it largely on grand jury testimony and documentation from Gosnell’s trial, which major media outlets covered sporadically. Columnists at Time magazine, Fox News, ABC News, theWashington Post, The Atlantic and elsewhere suggested that bias against the anti-abortion movement caused liberal journalists to ignore the story. A column for the The Daily Beast by Megan McArdle, for example, carried the headline, “Why I Didn’t Write About Gosnell’s Trial – And Why I Should Have,” and included a photo of the press gallery in the courtroom with every seat empty.
Phelim writes at the IndieGoGo site that they’re following the example of Veronica Mars:
Hollywood never would fund a movie such as this.
We funded our last film FrackNation using crowdfunding.
So far, the biggest “crowd funded” film of all-time is the Veronica Mars movie, a teen detective story that asked for $2.1m and raised $5.7m, we think the Gosnell movie is more important, we think you do too.
So we are asking for $2.1m and we are hoping to break the record and make history.
With your help we’re going to hire the best screenwriter, director and actors to make sure that the story of Kermit Gosnell gets into every home in America.
The project has already launched, but the first week is usually the most important for setting the momentum. I interviewed Phelim about the project, the problem with Kickstarter, and the need to tell the stories that the media don’t want to cover.
Phelim, Ann, and Magdalena Segieda explain the project in their own words: