Academy Award-winning filmmaker Charles Ferguson (“Inside Job”) had been contracted with CNN Films to produce a feature-length documentary about the life of Hillary Clinton — the former first lady, U.S. Secretary of State and presumptive 2016 presidential candidate
But Monday, Ferguson posted a scathing essay on the Huffington Post with the headline, “Why I Am Canceling My Documentary on Hillary Clinton.”
Ferguson wrote, “In June, I attended a dinner for Bill Clinton, which was educational. He and I also spoke privately. I asked him about the financial crisis and then he proceeded to tell me the most amazing lies I've heard in quite a while. (I) saw one reason why Hillary Clinton might not be thrilled about my movie.
“I discovered others. In Arkansas, she joined the boards of Walmart and Tyson Foods. One of the largest donors to the Bill, Hillary, and Chelsea Clinton Foundation is the government of Saudi Arabia. The Clinton's personal net worth now probably exceeds $200 million, and while earned legally, both the money's sources and the Clinton's public statements indicate a strong aversion to rocking boats or making powerful enemies.”
“The filmmaker,” Reuters reported, “said he was not pressured by CNN to cancel the project, and that the network's president, Jeff Zucker, had pledged his support for the film.”
Politico’s Dylan Byers noted, “Ferguson called his decision to cancel ‘a victory for the Clintons, and for the money machines that both political parties have now become.’ After signing his contract with CNN Films, he began receiving pressure from Clinton press secretary Nick Merrill and Clinton aide Philippe Reines.”
Also Monday, USA Today’s Catalina Camia and Gary Levin reported NBC announced that it “is abandoning plans for ‘Hillary,’ a miniseries planned for next year that would have starred Diane Lane as the former first lady with a story that started in the midst of her husband's Monica Lewinsky sex scandal.”