Correct me if you have evidence to the contrary, but this is the first case I've ever heard of an investor bringing suit against a filmmaker for not trying to make money. Marcand Russell Abrams, brothers and joint investors in the documentary The Long War of John Kerry, have sued director George Butler – a long-time Kerry friend – as well as the film's producers, for giving the pair the false impression that they "were trying to make a commercially successful film." The suit alleges that, instead, the film was intended as nothing but a propaganda tool for John Kerry's presidential campaign and, thus misled, the brothers want their money back. The Abramses also claim that Butler, et al refused to accept distribution from a "major motion picture company", which would have virtually guaranteed a return on their investment, but would have caused the film to come out long after the end of the Presidential campaign that the suit alleges the film was produced to influence. Butler says the lawsuit is "baseless and insulting to the artistic integrity of the film." Newsday has the full story, but what I'm left wondering is this: when did documentary filmmaking become synonymous with a safe investment?

categories Cinematical