Movies that make a difference…from Magnolia Pictures

Vertical integration and the ability to control the supply chain. That’s the vision for the entertainment properties that Todd Wagner and I have put together. We have acquired great companies like Rysher Entertainment, Landmark Theaters and Magnolia Pictures We have also created great companies like HDNet and HDNet Movies , HDNet Films and 2929 Entertainment, with more to come.

The goal in putting all of these companies together is to be able to control our own destiny. We want to be able to create films in HDTV format via HDNet Films and 2929, acquire them through Magnolia and thendistribute them digitally to our Landmark Theaters. We also have the ability to sell, show and distribute themin whatever (DVD, HD, etc) format we think consumers want, rather than what Hollywood dictates . Our goal is to provide entertainment to consumers, how, where and when they want. As Todd says, “what a concept, give the consumer what they want, rather than have someone tell them what they want.”

Things are going great, but there has been a side benefit that I had hoped for, but never really expected to happen so quickly. We are making and distributing movies that can truly impact peoples lives. HDNet Films is completely a documentary about the Enron debacle called Black Magic, which should be out this winter. Magnolia has taken the idea of movies that change peoples lives to an even greater level with the release of two movies:

Woman Thou Art Loosed and Voices of Iraq

Woman is a movie featuring Bishop TD Jakesand Kimberly Elise that is an adaptation of Bishop Jakes’ self-help novel, chronicling a woman’s struggle to come to terms with her legacy of abuse, addiction and poverty. It has had an amazing impact on the African American community and although the subject is very difficult, the message is uplifting. It’s a movie that we are very proud to have been part of. The movie extends to a very wide release across the country on October 22nd, so if you get the chance, check it out.

Voices of Iraq is another amazing film. It’s the one film that EVERYONE should be required to see before they vote. Former MTV producers Eric Manes and Martin Kunert partnered with actor and Gulf War vet Archie Drury to distributemore than 150 digital video
cameras across Iraq. Beginning amidst the Falluja uprising in April, going
through the marshlands in the South and Kurdish communities in the North and
ending less than a month ago, thousands of ordinary Iraqis became filmmakers. The 450 hours of tape they created show all the things the media never has access to. The real life of Iraqis. Eric, Martin and Archie edited those tapes into a powerful view of life that our media has no access to.

Honestly, when they sent the first cut of the movie to me, I sat down to watch it merely out of curiousity. Once it started, it was immediately obvious that this wasn’t a documentary about Iraqis. It was “the real story” behind all the rhetoric we are receiving from the media and our candidates. As I watched, with each scene and interview, it was if I was on a political rollercoaster. Jumping back and forth between “Bush was right for invading”, to “no he wasn’t. It was a mistake” I won’t tell you how I came out, but in watching this movie I felt far more informed and ready to vote. You will too. The movie opens in 10 cities October 29th. We are also working to get it out on DVD for those who can’t make it to theaters before election day. Watch the blog for more details.

Two great movies that I’m very proud of. I hope you will see them and let me know what you think.

51 thoughts on “Movies that make a difference…from Magnolia Pictures

  1. Mark -put up a side bar so we canclick to download these great movies you put out!
    You missed out on mine – but the iraqui one sounds powefully informative.

    Comment by bret Carr -

  2. At the heart of the story are two groups: the American neoconservatives and the radical Islamists. Both were idealists who were born out of the failure of the liberal dream to build a better world. These two groups have changed the world but not in the way either intended. Together they created today’s nightmare vision of an organised terror network.

    Comment by runescape money -

  3. as far as stem cells go? All I can say is look what happened the last time Religion had too much control over scientific inquiry and the advancement of knowledge for the betterment of mankind. We had the Dark Ages. If the Enlightenment didn’t come along, you and I would never be able to have electronic discourse. And if religion hadn’t held science back? We’d be, arguably, 500 years ahead with our technology.

    Comment by wow powerleveling -

  4. Got a chance to see Voices of Iraq. Powerful message indeed. Would definitely recommend its viewing.


    Comment by Brian -

  5. mark cuban sucks. It’s a shame that a good company such as landmark is now in the hands of such an arrogant, unintelligent douche bag. His reckless reorganization of this company has reduced employee morale, and his ideals on the business of media threaten to render landmark theaters just another unidentifiable force in a culture of the rich and the ignorant.

    Comment by landmark theaters employee -

  6. Mark
    I just saw Control Room Last night.
    Great film.It is a must see. Couple CR with “Fog of War” with
    “F-911” and I would hope most peoples eyes would open up.
    You wnted “Lifes been goog…” as a theme song; These films should all share “We gotta get out of this place”
    Thanks 2929 and Magnolia for distrbuting CR.

    Comment by democrat this time -

  7. the only non-partisan film out this fall… “America Speaks Out!” is playing in limited release in Dallas, Austin and Houston. Part II “America Speaks Out! – Massive Election” will be out in early DEC.

    Comment by david burrows -

  8. I see the film’s only opening in swing states before the election, but I’ll see it when it gets here. The more viewpoints the better, whoever wins the election.

    If you read the Baghdad Blogger during the war (Where’s Raed?), or his Guardian column afterwards, or his book ‘The Baghdad Blog’, you already know about this voice from Iraq. If you don’t, you should.

    His daily diary of a week in Washington DC talking to Americans in government about the war appeared on Friday:,,1332686,00.html
    and it’s yet another view. It’s long, but it ends:

    Now the seven days in Washington are over, one of the few things that seems clear to me is that even people in the know have no idea where to go next on Iraq, but everyone agrees mistakes have been made. Not much of a consolation.

    On my way out of the US, I have to go to the office of border protection again to get my passport stamped. I do my “I believe we should work with the Americans” spiel, but with less conviction than I usually do. The Americans I want to work with seem to be excluded – all they can do is wring their hands and say: “We tried to tell them.”

    Would John Kerry bring those people back into the game? Does that even matter now? Is it already too late?

    Comment by gigi -

  9. voices of iraq website down

    Server Error
    The server encountered an internal error and was unable to complete your request.

    JRun closed connection.

    too bad. sounded interesting too.

    Comment by Ralph Lee -

  10. this comment goes to george’s little one-liner half way up…maybe you are watching the wrong films? next you’ll be saying you don’t know if music and art help us…or have no impact on society.

    Comment by Ryan J. -

  11. or rather…the lack of any viability.

    Finally…here’s another informative article…since we’re quoting them.

    Comment by brett -

  12. Correction: It is obvious that you *are nescient*…in regards to the difference between Adult Stem Cells and Embryonic Stem Cells….and the viability of the latter.

    Comment by brett -

  13. 1. It is obvious that you are not nescient…in regards to the difference between Adult Stem Cells and Embryonic Stem Cells.

    2. There can never be a true separation between Church and State….based upon our governmental…political structure. Unless, if you don’t want your freedoms.

    3. Again it’s exaggerated…Church suppression of science…this article…hits the major points…

    “It is commonly believed that the Catholic Church persecuted Galileo for abandoning the geocentric (earth-at-the-center) view of the solar system for the heliocentric (sun-at-the-center) view.

    The Galileo case, for many anti-Catholics, is thought to prove that the Church abhors science, refuses to abandon outdated teachings, and is not infallible. For Catholics, the episode is often an embarrassment. It shouldn’t be.

    The following provides a brief explanation of what really happened to Galileo.


    The Church is not anti-scientific. It has supported scientific endeavors for centuries. During Galileo’s time, the Jesuits had a highly respected group of astronomers and scientists in Rome. In addition, many notable scientists received encouragement and funding from the Church and from individual Church officials. Many of the scientific advances during this period were made either by clerics or as a result of Church funding.

    Nicolaus Copernicus dedicated his most famous work, On the Revolution of the Celestial Orbs, in which he gave an excellent account of heliocentricity, to Pope Paul III. Copernicus entrusted this work to Andreas Osiander, a Lutheran clergyman who knew that Protestant reaction to it would be negative, since Martin Luther seemed to have condemned the new theory, and, as a result, the book would be condemned. Osiander wrote a preface to the book, in which heliocentrism was presented only as a theory that would account for the movements of the planets more simply than geocentrism did—something Copernicus did not intend.

    Ten years prior to Galileo, Johannes Kepler
    published a heliocentric work that expanded on Copernicus’ work. As a result, Kepler also found opposition among his fellow Protestants for his heliocentric views and found a welcome reception among some Jesuits who were known for their scientific achievements.

    Clinging to Tradition?

    Anti-Catholics often cite the Galileo case as an example of the Church refusing to abandon outdated or incorrect teaching, and clinging to a “tradition.” They fail to realize that the judges who presided over Galileo’s case were not the only people who held to a geocentric view of the universe. It was the received view among scientists at the time.

    Centuries earlier, Aristotle had refuted heliocentricity, and by Galileo’s time, nearly every major thinker subscribed to a geocentric view. Copernicus refrained from publishing his heliocentric theory for some time, not out of fear of censure from the Church, but out of fear of ridicule from his colleagues.

    Many people wrongly believe Galileo proved heliocentricity. He could not answer the strongest argument against it, which had been made nearly two thousand years earlier by Aristotle: If heliocentrism were true, then there would be observable parallax shifts in the stars’ positions as the earth moved in its orbit around the sun. However, given the technology of Galileo’s time, no such shifts in their positions could be observed. It would require more sensitive measuring equipment than was available in Galileo’s day to document the existence of these shifts, given the stars’ great distance. Until then, the available evidence suggested that the stars were fixed in their positions relative to the earth, and, thus, that the earth and the stars were not moving in space—only the sun, moon, and planets were.

    Thus Galileo did not prove the theory by the Aristotelian standards of science in his day. In his Letter to the Grand Duchess Christina and other documents, Galileo claimed that the Copernican theory had the “sensible demonstrations” needed according to Aristotelian science, but most knew that such demonstrations were not yet forthcoming. Most astronomers in that day were not convinced of the great distance of the stars that the Copernican theory required to account for the absence of observable parallax shifts. This is one of the main reasons why the respected astronomer Tycho Brahe refused to adopt Copernicus fully.

    Galileo could have safely proposed heliocentricity as a theory or a method to more simply account for the planets’ motions. His problem arose when he stopped proposing it as a scientific theory and began proclaiming it as truth, though there was no conclusive proof of it at the time. Even so, Galileo would not have been in so much trouble if he had chosen to stay within the realm of science and out of the realm of theology. But, despite his friends’ warnings, he insisted on moving the debate onto theological grounds.

    In 1614, Galileo felt compelled to answer the charge that this “new science” was contrary to certain Scripture passages. His opponents pointed to Bible passages with statements like, “And the sun stood still, and the moon stayed . . .” (Josh. 10:13). This is not an isolated occurrence. Psalms 93 and 104 and Ecclesiastes 1:5 also speak of celestial motion and terrestrial stability. A literalistic reading of these passages would have to be abandoned if the heliocentric theory were adopted. Yet this should not have posed a problem. As Augustine put it, “One does not read in the Gospel that the Lord said: ‘I will send you the Paraclete who will teach you about the course of the sun and moon.’ For he willed to make them Christians, not mathematicians.” Following Augustine’s example, Galileo urged caution in not interpreting these biblical statements too literally.

    Unfortunately, throughout Church history there have been those who insist on reading the Bible in a more literal sense than it was intended. They fail to appreciate, for example, instances in which Scripture uses what is called “phenomenological” language—that is, the language of appearances. Just as we today speak of the sun rising and setting to cause day and night, rather than the earth turning, so did the ancients. From an earthbound perspective, the sun does appear to rise and appear to set, and the earth appears to be immobile. When we describe these things according to their appearances, we are using phenomenological language.

    The phenomenological language concerning the motion of the heavens and the non-motion of the earth is obvious to us today, but was less so in previous centuries. Scripture scholars of the past were willing to consider whether particular statements were to be taken literally or phenomenologically, but they did not like being told by a non-Scripture scholar, such as Galileo, that the words of the sacred page must be taken in a particular sense.

    During this period, personal interpretation of Scripture was a sensitive subject. In the early 1600s, the Church had just been through the Reformation experience, and one of the chief quarrels with Protestants was over individual interpretation of the Bible.

    Theologians were not prepared to entertain the heliocentric theory based on a layman’s interpretation. Yet Galileo insisted on moving the debate into a theological realm. There is little question that if Galileo had kept the discussion within the accepted boundaries of astronomy (i.e., predicting planetary motions) and had not claimed physical truth for the heliocentric theory, the issue would not have escalated to the point it did. After all, he had not proved the new theory beyond reasonable doubt.

    Galileo “Confronts” Rome

    Galileo came to Rome to see Pope Paul V (1605-1621). The pope, weary of controversy, turned the matter over to the Holy Office, which issued a condemnation of Galileo’s theory in 1616. Things returned to relative quiet for a time,

    Comment by brett -

  14. I scan scores of websites for the news for Axis of Logic, thenews articles, studies, diaries from Iraq and well researched commentary contrast sharply with the edited contents of your film.

    The corporate owned main news media edits all real news out of the UPI, AP and Reuters news yet conservatives say it talks of the failures and is pro-dem. The dems say not enough is shown of Iraq and the problems..without pro Rep. spin. Michael Moore..had his edit and spin film. Now with the clips I saw on c-span today you have a film about the Americanization of Iraq, all can sleep well at night after watching.

    Where is the depleted uranium ? We have troops with cancer and malformed children..DNA, the earth and the air are changed forever with the depleted uranium in the AMERICAN soilder’s ammunition. Henry Kissenger’s legacy to out troops and the world. How could you avoid that topic ? I guess the “It was all worth it if it already happened” crowd will not see that when billionaires make a film it will support the elite that rules our country from Bilderberg conferences to G8 summits. The greed of capitalism and constraints against offending the corrupt decision-makers make any with the money to produce a film and distribute it..OWNED.

    The average american will be in the dark, until the depleted uranium mutant is born and then your film will look like what it is..a fairytale. Try for reality .

    Comment by Marie Prescott -

  15. I scan scores of websites for the news for Axis of Logic, thenews articles, studies, diaries from Iraq and well researched commentary contrast sharply with the edited contents of your film.

    The corporate owned main news media edits all real news out of the UPI, AP and Reuters news yet conservatives say it talks of the failures and is pro-dem. The dems say not enough is shown of Iraq and the problems..without pro Rep. spin. Michael Moore..had his edit and spin film. Now with the clips I saw on c-span today you have a film about the Americanization of Iraq, all can sleep well at night after watching.

    Where is the depleted uranium ? We have troops with cancer and malformed children..DNA, the earth and the air are changed forever with the depleted uranium in the AMERICAN soilder’s ammunition. Henry Kissenger’s legacy to out troops and the world. How could you avoid that topic ? I guess the “It was all worth it if it already happened” crowd will not see that when billionaires make a film it will support the elite that rules our country from Bilderberg conferences to G8 summits. The greed of capitalism and constraints against offending the corrupt decision-makers make any with the money to produce a film and distribute it..OWNED.

    The average american will be in the dark, until the depleted uranium mutant is born and then your film will look like what it is..a fairytale. Try for reality .

    Comment by Marie Prescott -

  16. How you can say Stem Cells have no promise really blows my mind – if you can somehow support that claim, I’d be more than willing to entertain it – but the past 3 years of Scientific American would like to have a word with you. Have you researched what the scientists have to say, or have you merely based your opinions off what your political party has to tell you?

    And I never said Willowbrook wasn’t a terrible catastrophe. The point you failed to comprehend was the one I was trying to make about the fact that bad things are bound to happen, but you can’t let that take away from the system as a whole. My point still stands that you’re ignoring the last 100 or so years of scientific experimentation which wasn’t brutal – you simply CANNOT use an outdated dark moment in the history of science to fuel an argument against it. It’s ridiculous. Is it possible for me to criticize you today based on what you did when you were a child?

    If you’re going to use Willowbrook and/or other dark moments in the history of “science”, well, I have just as much right to say we should throw away the Church because of the dark Ages, catholic priests raping little boys for hundreds of years, and any war that has been waged in the name of christianity/God (hello, Iraq War). But that’s not what I’m trying to do. I’m merely trying to point out that your narrow field of view is exactly the type of thing which holds back the world of knowledge. Rather than acknowledge the great things science has done, you’ll just bring up the bad moments over and over again until you’re blue in the face, and then talk about all the good things (nevermind the bad things) about whatever system it is you’re pushing for. It’s very close-minded and ignorant, in all honesty.

    And be careful, when you’re drawing up examples, to use REAL “science”. Hitler thought he was being scientific with his search for the “master race”, and Russia had its “psychic spies” during the cold war (as did the US, for that matter). Hopefully you’re bright enough to know the difference.

    How can one “exaggerate” how much religion has held back science? How about the church burning people wayyy back in the day for having differing views on the universe? (Galileo anybody?) You CANNOT deny that for 500 years the church more or less put a cap on the advancement of knowledge through science. There’s a reason why we had what’s called “The Enlightenment”, and there’s a reason why nearly nothing happened between 1000 ACE and 1500 ACE. A stunning example of that happening today is the community in the southern US where “Creationism” is taught alongside Evolution, and evolution is merely a “theory”.

    I’m not going to sit here and try to argue about whether Atheists or God-lovers have killed more people. The simple fact is that religion and politics DO NOT belong together – whether you believe in God or not. The constitution was originally founded in order to separate the Church and State. Did you know, though, that out of most major countries in the world the USA is the ONLY one which actually seems to tolerate the mention of God in the political process? There was a great show on BBC called “What the World Thinks of God”, and it was investigating just that – how many people believe in God, should it play a role in Politics, etc etc. The US came out as the only country where religion plays *any* kind of role in politics – in Canada, if our Prime Minister brought God into a conversation, he’d be criticised until the country was blue in the face. Why? Because we (humans in general) learned a LONG time ago that the Church and State are separate entities, and do not belong together. That doesn’t mean morals don’t play a role – and we all know that many of are moral/ethical standards ARE based on “don’t kill, don’t steal, respect people”, but that doesn’t mean Christianity should be in the White house, or any other political institution.

    I have a bit of an issue with your statement: “The documentary you embrace as gospel…”. What the FUCK are you talking about? I mentioned it as evidence that the US isn’t against fear mongering in order to try to create a desired effect. Did I ever say I believe every word of it? Do you have any evidence that I take it with more than a grain of salt? Or did I mention it because it poses an interesting argument that may shed light on your viewpoint??

    The part of the documentary that *has* aired was based entirely upon history, and the fact that the cold war may have been an excuse for the US to create an enemy – they MADE UP the fact that there were nuclear weapons, in the same way the SAME TWO GUYS created the “WMD in Iraq” situation. The CIA itself admitted that there was no evidence Russia had any weapons being developed. I have a hard time believing you’ve even seen it considering you’re talking about issues it hasn’t even addressed yet, and I have yet to see credible evidence which refutes those arguments.

    ALL that being said, I never said it was the ABSOLUTE truth, nor do I see it as any kind of “gospel”. I’m well aware that ANYTHING we see has an agenda behind it, and that EVERYONE is going to twist facts to push their agenda. That’s why I don’t limit myself to one form of media – I try to balance EVERYTHING I read with its opposing viewpoint so that I can make my own conclusions. But the fact that you say I see one documentary I mentioned as a counterpoint to some claims as “gospel” means that you’re willing to draw conclusions which aren’t based in reality – and that takes credibility away from everything you’ve said. I honestly DO NOT understand how you can draw a conclusion of “bunk” after part one of three has aired. Unless you’ve somehow seen the whole miniseries – since I haven’t seen the whole thing, I’m not ready to throw it out the window like you have.

    Honestly though, I’m interested to hear what you have to say about the link I posted above – you have yet to even mention it. In fact the more I read your post, the more it’s apparent to me that you avoided any one of the points I tried to make in my last post. You just labelled it as “fallacies”, and moved right along. You seem to just keep throwing the baby out with the bathwater.

    I’m pretty much done with this whole thing unless you actually want to engage in a discussion about the article I posted twice.

    Comment by Terence Tourangeau -

  17. You have yet to refute any of my prior arguments. You keep tossing out fallacies…and not addressing the issue at hand…ethics…and the fact that ESCs have shown no promise…as opposed to ASCs.

    In regards to ethics and Willowbrook…mentally challenged children were injected with the hepatitis virus…because of the following:

    1) Many of the scientists figured they would contract the virus anyway.

    2) They were mentally inferior…and thus lesser.

    3) The experiments were for the betterment for the overall good.

    Fingers…toes…mental capacity…don’t constitute a person. If this were the case…numerous disabled vets…and individuals with down syndrome wouldn’t be people.

    As far as religion…

    The alleged history of religion suppressing science has been greatly exaggerated and is often heralded by secularlists and atheists…as a reason to completely do away with religion and politics.

    Actually…if you’ve studied history you would know that the vast majority of carnage has been spread through the use of institutionalized atheism. You will find that the greatest evil results from those who are convinced there is no God…to whom they must answer.

    The worst per capita genocide happened within Cambodia under Khmer Rouge. More than one third of eight million cambodians were killed between April 17, 1975-79. It was under Mao Zedong that 30-60 million Chinese were murdered (1949-1965).

    Nobel Prize winner Alexander Solzhenitsyn estimates that between 1917 – 1959…through state repression, etc….~66 million people died under Khrushchev, Lenin, and Stalin.

    In WWII…in Poland…2-3 million Polish Catholics were murdered. By 1941 — 7000 Polish priests were executed (all found within the Nuremberg Trial documents — 3279-PS, etc.)…another 3000 were in concentration camps.

    Document F-616 submitted as exhibit number RF-425…in the area of Nice…July 20, 1944…went to a farm…raped the wife of the christian farm owner and crucified their 3 year old son.

    Christian Slavs aka “Der Untermensch” (polish, czechs, yugoslavians, ukrainians)…referred to as part of the “inferior race” were all executed. (See testimony of Von Dem Bach)

    3268-PS…a Polish priest was…scourged…had a crown of thorns placed on him…and was crucified in Dachau.

    On, September 30, 1942…Dr. Gutkelch gave a report where Christian babies were ordered to be thrown off of moving trains (2520-PS and 084-PS)

    1939…pilgrimages to national shrines were strictly prohibited…czech priests were robbed of their property and executed. SS Youth were assigned to whip priests…as the rags…would pull carts (p. 333…Volume 8…Nuremberg War Crimes Testimony)

    German soldiers turned churches into stables…housing dogs and horses (the Church of the Prophet Elijah)…people were burned alive inside churches (Exhibit Number USSR-51(3)). In the village of Kholm…Germans beat up an 82 year old priest. In retreating from the Church of the Ascension…Germans blew up the Church…along with the Church of the Holy Trinity…and the Cathedral of Nicholas. Document USSR-12..German soldiers turned the Znamensky Cathedral into a huge latrine for soldiers.

    Hans Frank (Nazi Minister of Justice and Nazi-Governor..General of Polani) before being executed stated…”At the beginning of our way we did not suspect that our turning away from God could have such disastrous deadly consequences”…and…”Hitler’s road was the way without God, the way of turning from Christ and, in the last analysis, the way of political foolishness, the way of disaster, and the way of death.”

    I could go on and on…with testimonies, etc.

    But, back to the whole issue of the separation between Church and State…you can not completely separate the two…considering “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty, and the pursuit of Happiness.” To completely separate the two…or do away with the prior…would mean that the only rights you possess are those that the government decides you should have.

    I saw that Kerry stated again today that…he couldn’t take his religious views (in regards to abortion, etc.)…and legislate it on a Protestant or a Jew or an atheist, etc.

    This is fallacious…sure you can. Laws are
    created by individuals with various personal convictions…which are no doubt driven by a particular belief system.

    If Kerry truly believes in what he’s stated…then we shouldn’t convict any individual who murders another individual. Who says murder is wrong? Who says stealing is wrong? Why must I help the poor? What creature within nature takes care of the weak…or the inferior? None…it’s called natural selection. To be truly Atheist…would mean one would have to completely embrace Darwinism.

    You obviously are a pacifist…and embrace appeasement. I know of no free country that has preserved its liberty through pacifism, etc. Even the Dalai Llama had to bear arms against the Chinese…but it was too late.

    The invasion of Iraq was as valid as the U.S. invading Europe after Japan attacked Pearl Harbor. It looks like we’ll have to bail the world out again. The U.S. had to bail Europe out during WWII. The Swedes had to cower to the Germans by supplying iron ore. You would think France would have thought something was up when the Pols were forced to dine on Bratwurst. The only saving grace for Britain was the fact that FDR dusted off the Lend Lease Act.

    The documentary you embrace as gospel…was flawed on numerous levels and was clearly propaganda to feed the anti-American sentiment in Europe. For instance…by insinuating that Al Qaeda is a bunch of loose cannons with no solid infrastructure. Just merely considering the arrest of Muhammad Naeem Noor Khan and Ahmed Khalfan Ghailani alone…blasts a hole through that theory alone…and to dismiss the devastation that would occur from a dirty bomb (via the doc’s use of junk science)…not only the environmental…but economic…is hebetudinous. It’s like Michael Moore saying there is no terrorist threat.

    To say that Iraq wasn’t a terrorist haven of Al Qaeda…considering Ahmed Hikmat Shakir…Abdul Rahman Yasin…Fazel Inzal al-Khalayleh…the meetings between Ayman al-Zawahiri and Iraqi officials in the late 90’s…and the whole Ansar Al-Islam issue…is to be completely nescient of the matter at hand. I’m a bit familiar with the current situation since my best friend just came back from Iraq…he’s in MI. My father was a pilot from ’62-’67…and thus…many of his friends now are working in the pentagon…writing books…and dealing with the current situation in the Middle East. It doesn’t make me an expert…but I would like to think I might know a little more than the average Michael Moore fan…and Indymedia conspiracy theorists.

    Osama and islamo-fascists like Zarqawi have one major goal…the institution of a world Caliph. This form of Muslim thought divides the world into two spheres, the Abode of Islam and the Abode of War. Christians…Jews…etc. can be tolerated (I use this very very very loosely) within a Muslim state under Muslim rule. But, under this form of Islam (not the predominate moderate form that now exists)… Christian and Jewish states must be destroyed and their lands conquered. Reagan was right when he said…there is no argument over the choice between peace and war…but, there is only one guaranteed way to have peace…and you can have it within the next second…surrender. Osama would like that.

    We can agree to disagree.

    Comment by brett -

  18. “I’ve seen “The Power of Nightmares” and it’s mostly bunk. It’s been discussed quite a bit over here in the U.S. It’s about as accurate as F911. I will post more later…”

    Mostly bunk, huh? Way to elaborate. Your argument makes me really wonder what you actually have to back up your claims. Tell you what – if you start footnoting your “facts”, I’ll start to take them with more than a grain of salt. And in all honesty, take an hour and spend it reading an article I posted above – entitled “The Green Zone”. In fact, here’s the link again for your convenience:

    Clicky click! It’s from a magazine entitled The Atlantic Monthly, and it’ll honestly open your eyes to what exactly is taking place in Iraq – beyond all the fear mongering and WMD claims. Give it a chance, at least. I’d recommend picking up a copy of the magazine to see what they have to offer – I find the book reviews are even better than the NY Times.

    And as far as stem cells go? All I can say is look what happened the last time Religion had too much control over scientific inquiry and the advancement of knowledge for the betterment of mankind. We had the Dark Ages. If the Enlightenment didn’t come along, you and I would never be able to have electronic discourse. And if religion hadn’t held science back? We’d be, arguably, 500 years ahead with our technology. Although if today’s world is any indication, we wouldn’t be around to talk to each other if we were that advanced – we’d have wiped ourselves out long ago.

    I think it’s important to distinguish between life, intelligence, and sentience when you’re talking about stem cells. Many people define life as sentience, or the capability of a life form to “know” of its own existence – it is “conscious”. The church likes to say “life” begins when cells divide – which I have no doubt about – as life is a process, and once that process begins, it exists. Intelligence is a whole other ball game – just look at Frank Vertosick’s book “The Genius Within” – it’ll really open your eyes.

    But what I’ve really got issues about is that you talk about the whole stem cell thing as if it’s an issue of faith – as in, there’s no proof it’ll work so don’t bother with it. Look at how much scientific discovery was made in ways that people could have never anticipated – we all know the story of how penicillin was invented. Are you saying that because the results aren’t 100% certain you shouldn’t even try? It’s clear you’re not a scientifically minded person, because that goes against everything the scientific community stands for.

    I find it kind of funny that you use “evolution” as a defence against people losing jobs to robots, but you denounce one of the
    best ways we can advance the knowledge of our human body – doesn’t knowledge have to evolve too?
    You also say: “In the last century we were quite brutal in regards to experimentation
    …wither it’s the hepatitis experiments at the Willowbrook State School…or MKULTRA.”

    Should I point you in the direction of the 99.9% of scientific experimentation that WASN’T BRUTAL?!? Jesus man, talk about throwing the baby out with the bath water – in any walk of life, there are shitheads, and there are nice people. There are good doctors, lawyers, chefs, you name it – but there are also bad ones. As humanity progresses, it needs to learn. There were many mistakes made in the past that we’ve learned from. That comment is tantamount to me saying your family is horrible because your great grandfather used to kick puppies. Look at the last 35 years of real science if you’re going to look for the basis of what is done today.

    And to end on a more pleasant note, with regards to who is next, and who poses the most threat at this stage to the world. Sure, Saddam may have had the capability to MAYBE make a bomb if he HAD the resources (which he didn’t). Sure, maybe one or two guys in Iran WANT to build a nuclear weapon if they get 100 billion dollars. And yeah, maybe North Korea is trying to power its country and the side effects of that is weapons grade plutonium. But Brett, tell me WHO actually HAS WEAPONS OF MASS DESTRUCTION? WHO is the country that has gone about bombing people? INNOCENT people (“war” be damned). The fact is, the USA HAS weapons of mass destruction, and poses more of a threat to world peace than any other country in the history of our space-rock. Didn’t Bill Clinton sign a treaty saying that the US would cease all nuclear weapon-making, in agreement with russia and the rest of the world? And didn’t George Bush throw that out the window? You need to start looking at your own country before you go around talking about the scary Iraqis and Iranians. If the US would concentrate on INTERNATIONAL RELATIONS and work towards SOLUTIONS – rather than invade, bomb and occupy – perhaps we’d have a safer world to live in.

    Oh, and Bush’s slip said it all – “We will NOT have an all-volunteer army”

    Comment by Terence Tourangeau -

  19. An interesting article…

    Comment by brett -

  20. Forgive my typos…it’s late.

    I’m a Teddy Roosevelt style Republican…that’s why I support just about every Bush policy.

    Quite frankly…we need to rename the political parties within the U.S. The Republicans should be called “Capitalists” and the Democrats should be called, “Socialists.”

    John Kerry and the Democratic Party believe in big government…income redistribution, etc.

    Hillary’s slip in San Francisco said it all, “We’re going to take things away from you on behalf of the common good.”

    Socialism creates mediocrity. Capitalism…competition…spurs innovation.

    I’ll hit the three hotbutton issues within this campaign…


    Outsourcing is a red herring within this campaign.

    We knew this was going to happen…we’re living in a global economy and trade liberalization is very much beneficial to our economic well-being.

    Bush is right…education and retraining are key. I remember individuals complaining when robotics really began to catch on in the manufacturing sector…it was inevitable…
    it’s evolution.

    Punishing companies for outsourcing is counterproductive…and they’ll ultimately take it on the consumer. They key is positive reinforcement…by creating a positive atmosphere..or rather incentives…for companies to either stay and/or come here. Let’s not forget foreign firms are outsourcing to the U.S. I find Bush’s “Opportunity Zones” plan quite interesting. From what I understand…if a specific state’s unemployment level deviates greatly from that of the national…”smart tax-cuts and incentive package(s)” go into effect for a particular region
    of the state that’s hit the hardest by unemployment…creating an environment that will attract companies.

    Finally…fyi…the Department of Labor found that only 2% of the major layoffs under Bush were due to outsourcing.

    Stem Cells

    Ethics, etc. must always be considered with science. In the last century we were quite brutal in regards to experimentation
    …wither it’s the hepatitis experiments at the Willowbrook State School…or MKULTRA.

    In a nutshell…

    Either life begins at conception…or it doesn’t. If there is serious doubt…in the moral and ethical ramifications of given experimentation…then it should not be pursued…it must be discussed.

    The fact remains a myriad of ethicists…theologians…conclude life does begin at conception. As one scientist (who is an atheist) stated, “We’re given everything
    we need at conception — from there on out — it’s a matter or maturity.” The scientists who want to conduct ESC experimentation basically want a blank check in the name of science. Not only that…they want the government to fund that in which the private sector sees really no benefit.

    It would be like me walking into Cuban’s office and saying…”Hey, man…I need you to invest $10 mil in a project…now, the odds are that…you will probably never see a return on your investment and we probably won’t learn anything per say…but, hey – we might….but, if we do…it will be probably 50 years down the road. How about it?”

    There’s plethora of cells available at the NIH. It’s not a matter of funding…it’s the lack of ideas.

    It’s also ASCs that have been proven extremely beneficial to science and medicine…not ESCs.

    Iraq War

    I support it.

    1. A democracy in the Middle East would be
    a devastating blow to islamo-facists. Just as illegal aliens flood into our country for the hopes of a better life…so would individuals from Iran…Syria…etc. into Iraq. The clerics and radicals from Iran, etc…
    know they will lose their stronghold in the region and they can’t afford for Iraq to be successful. This is why we’re seeing an influx of foreign fighters.

    2. Saddam was a huge threat…Iraq was no doubt a special general. I recommend a book called, “The Bomb In My Garden”…which was written by Mahdi Obedi. Obeidi was in charge of Saddam’s nuclear program. He has stated that it’s true the nuclear program wasn’t active at the time of the invasion but…Saddam wanted a bomb since the mid to late 70s (with the Osirak reactor)…and that he personally
    started up the centrifuge program. Prior to the invasion Saddam made him bury key parts of the program in his yard. He said
    Saddam was waiting for the UN Sanctions to drop (UN oil-for-food)…all he needed was a tad more funding…and could have produced
    a bomb within an instant. Let’s also not forget Dr. Germ told the U.S. that their biological and chemical programs could have been started within weeks. At this same time…we’ve learned that the infrastructure within Iraq was imploding (Note: Chris Hitchens has written a great deal
    about this)….now, if Saddam would have gotten a nuclear bomb…and Iraq would have collapsed at this same time…there is no doubt…radicals (like Zarqawi) would have gotten ahold them. We’re still sweating over the nuclear devices that have gone missing after the Soviet Union tumbled.

    And no…North Korea should not be handled in the same manner as Iraq. You will see more of a Cold War like scenario in regards to that particular country.

    Iran is in the crosshairs next.*-http%3A//*-http%3A//

    And the fact that Iran is seeking 97.2 billion dollars in reparations from Iraq for the 1980-1988 war between the two countries…provides a slight indication that they might be hurting more than they’re leading on in various ways.

    Comment by brett -

  21. Dungeon719, two things.
    1. Where did you see Voices of Iraq. Considering its only had 2 screenings
    2. Do you know who distributed Control Room ?
    We did. Its distributed by Magnolia Pictures. I put the hotlinks in the blog entry so you could see whatelse we have done….

    Comment by Mark Cuban -

  22. I feel sad reading the post from our Canadian friend above. CONTROL ROOM is everything you could want from a film dealing with such a hot-button issue. Unfortunately, VOICES OF IRAQ pales in comparison, both aesthetically and rhetorically. Where CONTROL ROOM was levelheaded, IRAQ teases with a promise of the same only to descend to a depth that makes Fox News look legitimate. Where CONTROL ROOM was balanced in its construction, IRAQ plays pretend for 30 minutes before turning into a Bush campaign video. If this is the level of discourse that moves Cuban, then heaven help us all.

    I DO believe the war in Iraq will eventually prove to be a good thing, but these filmmakers have sugar-coated the pill to make the force-feeding go down more smoothly. I wonder if the Iraqi participants were told how cruelly their opening up to the camera would be exploited. I wonder if Cuban even watched CONTROL ROOM. It would explain why it wasn’t mentioned above as that is a movie that truly has the power open up dialogue. VOICES OF IRAQ only speaks to itself.

    Comment by dungeon719 -

  23. I’ve seen “The Power of Nightmares” and it’s mostly bunk. It’s been discussed quite a bit over here in the U.S. It’s about as accurate as F911. I will post more later…on Bush’s policies.

    Until then.

    Have a good one.

    Comment by brett -

  24. Heaven help America if the selection of it’s future leader is based on Mark Cuban’s opinion (clearly as informed and intellectually capable as anyone who’s read a pamphlet during their lifetime), and either a fear or a lust for war.

    Issues that America has to face go far beyond the obvious, but hey….if a cerebral giant such as Mark says otherwise then perhaps it would be perfectly rational to base your vote on a movie that the genius himself is “very proud of”.

    Comment by Meretrix Jones -

  25. Hi, I don´t know if movies help us or not.

    Comment by George -

  26. To anyone who has the means, I highly suggest checking out a three-part documentary which is airing over the next three weeks on the BBC, entitled “The Power of Nightmares”.

    A description from the site:

    “This series shows dramatically how the idea that we are threatened by a hidden and organised terrorist network is an illusion. It is a myth that has spread unquestioned through politics, the security services and the international media. At the heart of the story are two groups: the American neoconservatives and the radical Islamists. Both were idealists who were born out of the failure of the liberal dream to build a better world. These two groups have changed the world but not in the way either intended. Together they created today’s nightmare vision of an organised terror network. A fantasy that politicians then found restored their power and authority in a disillusioned age. Those with the darkest fears became the most powerful.”

    Remember, this is the BBC – not conspiracy theorists. Did you know, Brett (poster above me), that Donald Rumsfeld and Dick Cheney were claiming Russia was a “threat” in the mid 70’s even though the CIA said it had NO evidence to support that claim?

    Watching this documentary, you’ll begin to see new light shed on all the comments posted above, and about every single claim about Iraq… it’s severe Deja Vu. Which brings us to “Voices of Iraq”, where we’ll get to see and hear the soldiers who were used to take over a country which shouldn’t have been invaded.

    It’s strange, sometimes I feel far more educated about what’s going on in the US and the historical precedents for it than many Americans are – and I’m not even from the US. Nor do I live there.

    And I do hope, Brett, that you’re voting not based on the war in Iraq but based on the entire platform of the presidential candidates. Do you REALLY support Bush, across the board??

    Comment by Terence Tourangeau -

  27. It’s only a matter of time before digital
    takes over….the film vs. digital debate has always been like the vinyl debate from the old days…that is…there were those who thought
    CDs wouldn’t take over the Vinyl market, etc….people will love the crackles
    of vinyl…CD sounds too clean.

    I’m with Robert Rodriguez, Francis Ford Coppola, George Lucas, James Cameron…
    etc. on this one…I won’t shoot film anymore unless I have to. When I was chatting with Rodriguez in Austin…he was telling me how he put on a seminar to demonstrate HD 24P vs Film out in LA. The directors in the audience couldn’t tell the difference at all. The only individual who was gung-ho film in the end was Oliver Stone. Good news is that Martin Scorcese is now seriously considering digital. 🙂 When someone lights HD incorrectly though…I must admit…it will look like video…but if done correctly it looks beautiful. One has to pay more attention to controlling bright areas moreso than when
    lighting for film. As far as cost…it’s like what I told someone awhile back…for film you’re paying $70 per min…for HD $2 per min (I’m averaging in all the post costs, etc).

    When I first considered digital…I was unsure as well…but then at the end of the day the only reason I could see why anyone would go with
    film is because of nostalgic reasons. I’ve found that film is completely inefficient…but I must admit I still use film sometimes
    for various reasons. I just love all the +’s in the end…I see what I’m getting…I don’t have to wait for dailies…it’s easier to import footage to add FX, etc. When I shoot film I’m always thinking I hope it didn’t cook something or underexpose something too much…etc. With HD I don’t have to worry if the color is going to be sucked out of it…
    it doesn’t have the extreme amount of contrast that film does now these days because of the way the labs process it, etc.


    Did Bush mislead the American people about as to the reasons why the U.S. went to war in Iraq?

    The following comments were made by George Bush Jr. before the Iraq War….all made during news conferences and major speeches to the American people.

    October 7, 2002

    “And that is the source of our urgent concern about Saddam Hussein’s links to international terrorist groups. Over the years, Iraq has provided safe haven to terrorists such as Abu Nidal, whose terror organization carried out more than 90 terrorist attacks in 20 countries that killed or injured nearly 900 people, including 12 Americans. Iraq has also provided safe haven to Abu Abbas, who was responsible for seizing the Achille Lauro and killing an American passenger. And we know that Iraq is continuing to finance terror and gives assistance to groups that use terrorism to undermine Middle East peace.

    We know that Iraq and the al Qaeda terrorist network share a common enemy — the United States of America. We know that Iraq and al Qaeda have had high-level contacts that go back a decade. Some al Qaeda leaders who fled Afghanistan went to Iraq. These include one very senior al Qaeda leader who received medical treatment in Baghdad this year, and who has been associated with planning for chemical and biological attacks [Note: Zarqawi]. We’ve learned that Iraq has trained al Qaeda members in bomb-making and poisons and deadly gases. And we know that after September the 11th, Saddam Hussein’s regime gleefully celebrated the terrorist attacks on America.

    Iraq could decide on any given day to provide a biological or chemical weapon to a terrorist group or individual terrorists. Alliance with terrorists could allow the Iraqi regime to attack America without leaving any fingerprints.

    Some have argued that confronting the threat from Iraq could detract from the war against terror. To the contrary; confronting the threat posed by Iraq is crucial to winning the war on terror.”

    December 31, 2002

    “Well, first of all, I think it’s important to remember that Saddam Hussein was close to having a nuclear weapon. We don’t know whether or not he has a nuclear weapon. We do expect him to disarm his weapons of mass destruction, that’s what we expect.

    Secondly, the international community has been trying to resolve the situation in Iraq through diplomacy for 11 years. And for 11 years, Saddam Hussein has defied the international community. And now we’ve brought the world together to send a clear signal: we expect him to disarm, to get rid of his weapons of mass destruction. The first step in determining whether or not he will do that was discouraging. His declaration was short. And the international community recognized that, that he wasn’t forthcoming.

    Again, I hope this Iraq situation will be resolved peacefully. One of my New Year’s resolutions is to work to deal with these situations in a way so that they’re resolved peacefully. But thus far, it appears that, first look, that Saddam Hussein hasn’t heard the message.”

    January 3, 2003

    “The Iraqi regime has used weapons of mass destruction. They not only had weapons of mass destruction, they used weapons of mass destruction. They used weapons of mass destruction on people in other countries, they have used weapons of mass destruction on their own people. That’s why I say Iraq is a threat, a real threat.

    Four years ago, U.N. inspectors concluded that Iraq had failed to amount — account for large stockpiles of chemical and biological weapons, weapons capable of killing millions. In last month’s declaration, Iraq again failed to account for those weapons.

    The Iraqi dictator did not even attempt to submit a credible declaration. We can now be certain that he holds the United Nations and the U.N. Security Council and its resolutions in contempt. He really doesn’t care about the opinion of mankind. Saddam Hussein was given a path to peace; thus far, he has chosen the path of defiance.

    The fate of the Iraqi regime is being determined by its own decisions. Saddam Hussein knows precisely what he can and must do to avoid conflict. We have made that clear. The world has spoken with one voice.”

    February 26, 2003

    “The first to benefit from a free Iraq would be the Iraqi people, themselves.

    Today they live in scarcity and fear, under a dictator who has brought them nothing but war, and misery, and torture. Their lives and their freedom matter little to Saddam Hussein — but Iraqi lives and freedom matter greatly to us.”

    “Bringing stability and unity to a free Iraq will not be easy.”

    “There was a time when many said that the cultures of Japan and Germany were incapable of sustaining democratic values.”

    “The world has a clear interest in the spread of democratic values, because stable and free nations do not breed the ideologies of murder. They encourage the peaceful pursuit of a better life. And there are hopeful signs of a desire for freedom in the Middle East. Arab intellectuals have called on Arab governments to address the “freedom gap” so their peoples can fully share in the progress of our times. Leaders in the region speak of a new Arab charter that champions internal reform, greater politics participation, economic openness, and free trade. And from Morocco to Bahrain and beyond, nations are taking genuine steps toward politics reform. A new regime in Iraq would serve as a dramatic and inspiring example of freedom for other nations in the region.”

    March 17, 2003

    “The regime has a history of reckless aggression in the Middle East. It has a deep hatred of America and our friends. And it has aided, trained and harbored terrorists, including operatives of al Qaeda.”

    “The danger is clear: using chemical, biological or, one day, nuclear weapons, obtained with the help of Iraq, the terrorists could fulfill their stated ambitions and kill thousands or hundreds of thousands of innocent people in our country, or any other.”

    “Yet, the only way to r

    Comment by brett -

  28. “Vertical integration and the ability to control the supply chain.”

    Forgive me if I’m not excited at this prospect. Let’s say that 2929 develops the most desired content in the marketplace. If you control the supply chain, will you not distribute the content in the most profitable way you can? Isn’t this exactly what “Hollywood” does?

    Anyway, content is king. Make great stuff and you’ll be way richer than you already are. Vertical integration won’t help much if your content doesn’t appeal to anyone.

    Good luck to ya…

    Comment by Mountain Dew -

  29. Hey Mark,
    I read an article about you investing heavily in hdtv net in Forbes magazine. when is HDTV net going public ?

    Comment by Teddy -

  30. Mark-

    I have always been a fan of independent films, therefore, I have been a patron on the Magnolia Theatre and others for a long time. In fact, I love the Monday Nights at the Magnolia where you get to watch the Benefactor and Monday Night Football on the big screen.

    Voices of Iraq, sounds like a powerful film. I love to see how the people who live through revolutions live and find ways to prosper. The Motorcycle Diaries is another film that delves into how revolutionaries are born. Whether you agree with the politics of Che or not, it’s important to see the poverty and despair that he saw in his country and it’s people. It was that poverty and despair that led him to become a revolutionary…It’s too soon to understand the scope of our actions in Iraq. The children of Iraq today will grow up to be the rulers and leaders of tomorrow’s Iraq. We should all see what they see…Do they feel oppressed or liberated by the US soldiers? Are their families torn apart or drawn together by our administrations politics? Will they come to us with love and hope in their hearts or will they seek us out with hate and revenge on their minds?….I’m glad we can all have a glimpse of tomorrow with this film today…

    Comment by Ana loza -

  31. Mark,

    Brilliant foresight into the realm of HD. You will be rewarded in a big way if history is to repeat itself.

    In regard to vertical integration and the ability to control the supply chain:
    I was part of the online music distribution negotiations between major record labels and brick-and-mortar retailers during the late 1990’s. Reports would lead many to believe that the labels simply missed the boat, were too greedy, or were too set in their ways to enact the building of online music distribution infrastructure. Well, the labels are greedy; but the critical hurdle was that traditional retailers (i.e. WalMart, Tower, Wherehouse, etc.) threatened to lock out ANY label that attempted to assemble internet distribution, which would have been a deathblow to said label’s marketshare. Since the record companies were making more money than ever before during the late 1990’s, they said, “Okay, then we’ll just prosecute anyone who tries to profit online from our copyrights.” They had no idea someone would do it for free — because it could be done. Had the retailers not played their trump cards in this manner, the digital music landscape would look much different and be much more advanced than it is today.

    I see your efforts with HD production as a replay of that scenario — except that you have distribution to back it up. Congratulations on your continued success. Here’s wishing you much more going forward.


    Sean Sullivan

    Comment by Sean Sullivan -

  32. Voices from Iraq sounds interesting and from what I’ve read on your blog I have no idea if it leaves the viewer as being for the “liberation” Iraq or against the “invasion”. What I do know from watching other documentaries on the horrors of Sadam Hussein, I would imagine it would tend to reflect the horrors of most countries where a ruthless dictator is in charge. The reason I’m writing this comment is just a word of caution, if the results of watching the film would have you conclude that the “liberation” was the right thing to do then this would set a dangerous precedence for the US to “liberate” countries as they see fit. This type of precedence could be very costly for American taxpayers and costly to American international relations. Can we afford to sit idly by and watch ruthless dictators terrorize their people in the name of greed and power. No, but can America afford to act alone in these battles in an all out military assault. Probably not.

    Comment by Sebastien -

  33. Dear Mark,
    Making a positive impact on people’s is exactly what the business idea that I have been trying to present to you will do. What’s more is that it will command an awesome return on investment! You really need to meet with me and my CEO.

    Comment by Dave Anderson -

  34. Can you please tell me when your movies are featuring in the U.K?

    Contact me via my web blog.

    Comment by -

  35. If you will be voting for either of the big two (dems or repubs), you must not be cognizant of the fact that neither candidate differs in their solution to the Iraq situation, only in the amount of troops they’ll be sending (or stop-loss enslaving) to continue in the quagmire over there. (I somehow doubt Mark will lower himself to voting.)

    Voices of Iraq looks promising, I hope its editor did not edit in his own agenda, or at least tried not to.

    If you must vote, I suggest casting it for liberty rather than perpetual state power grabs, by voting libertarian to send a message to the DC elite.

    Have fun at jury duty.

    “the natural order of things is for government to gain ground and for liberty to yield.” — TJ

    Comment by pooof -

  36. If you think it is so important to see before you vote, I think how you were influenced is pertinent information.

    I imagine you don’t want to tell us how the movie influenced you, because you don’t want to piss off half of your potential viewers.

    I think that’s shortsighted though. Obviously you can tell us that you found information that supports both sides, but I think we want to know how you came out and WHY.

    The WHY is the important part. Because if you have a compelling reason why, then I’ll want to see the movie to evaluate why you think so.

    Comment by Dingo's Calzones -

  37. As a supplement to my post above, I think this should be required reading for everybody, yourself included Mark. To anyone who hasn’t read it, it will most likely change your perspective on the War. Don’t be afraid of the length – I really urge everyone to read it, even if you have to take it in small chunks. Truly eye-opening. Enjoy.

    Comment by Terence Tourangeau -

  38. Mark- I will be watching for the announcement of how we can get a DVD of the movie “Voices of Iraq” prior to election day. Maybe someone needs to go on Bill O’Reilly and discuss it or maybe even better maybe Sean Hannity can see it when he comes to town next Friday afternoon so that the movie can get national exposure. Just an idea.

    Comment by ann massey -

  39. Today I watched an incredible documentary entitled “Control Room”, which looks at the media coverage of the War in Iraq. Personally, I feel that news has become much like history: a largely fictional creation based around a framework of reality. It’s becoming increasingly apparent that the only things we can know to be true in the world are the things which we experience ourselves.

    As I watched this documentary, I became more and more shocked at the things I was seeing – it was a first hand account of the war shown from inside the country, with a lot of focus given the struggles faced by the Al-Jazeera television network. It ranks among the best coverage I have seen about the war, alongside a documentary produced in Canada by CTV which placed a journalist in a home with an Iraqi family before and during the attacks on Baghdad. Such footage can’t even begin to compare with what major news networks will show.

    It’s in this vein that I truly commend you and Magnolia Films on Voices of Iraq. Upon watching the above mentioned films, I couldn’t help but run thousands of ideas through my head – how can I make a difference? What can I possibly do to educate people in the world? Why are the richest people in the world (save for a few) always out there to spout right-wing propaganda? If I had a few billion dollars worth of liquid assets, there’s no question in my mind that I’d be able to permanently change the world for the better. And there’s no question in my mind that the film you’ve described will have a similar impact on people. I couldn’t help but visualize, while watching Control Room, the entire history of evolution, and the fact that we all come from the same place. The only thing that really divides us any more is the way we name our God, the language we speak to each other in, and the type of metal and paper we throw at each other in order to get things.

    I’ll end this rambling prose by saying “Thank you” for what you do for the world, and that I wish all Americans the best of luck when early November rolls around. I really do hope, with all my heart, that the right man is selected on Election Day. Your choice will affect the world more profoundly than 9/11 ever could have – this is a defining moment in history for your country, more so than any election in the past. I only hope that you find the best way to distribute the film so as to reach as many people as possible. Good luck, and keep up the phenomenal work Mark.

    Comment by Terence Tourangeau -

  40. I’ve read about this one and think it would be facinating – truly presenting what happens, versus some one-sided presentation (even if I agreed with it) – ala Michael Moore.

    Your vertical integration in this industry could really change things, be interesting to see how this develops.

    P.S. And for some light-hearted late night fun, surf to the Lights/Webcam URL and vote for HULK! 😉

    Comment by Hulk's Halloween Lights/Webcam -

  41. I am on Channel 1 with you Mark. In the best case scenario, content should entertain, offer a fresh perspective and connect people. It’s hard to to that. If you can achieve it, you have found vocation nirvana, the intersection of commerce and virtue.

    Comment by Shawn -

  42. I am on Channel 1 with you Mark. In the best case scenario, content should entertain, offer a fresh perspective and connect people. It’s hard to to that. If you can achieve it, you have found vocation nirvana, the intersection of commerce and virtue.

    Comment by Shawn -

  43. hey mark — um… if voices of iraq is, “the one film that EVERYONE should be required to see before they vote” then why is it only being released in limited scale prior to the election? can you get it released in a wider scale? or, better yet, post it and we’ll download it! or… show it after the benefactor next week!

    Comment by dennis -

  44. Why does everyone think the war should determine who should be president or not? There are a lot more issues than war.

    Comment by tk -

  45. Forgot to add: 2 weeks to go till election, how can you get this message out to everyone by then?

    Comment by Kunal Anand -

  46. If this is as significant as you make it seem, then why don’t you air it on TV or better, online. Other than the bottom line number, if this will have an impact on voters or giving the average individual more insight into the war then this should be accessible to everyone.

    Notwithstanding, it’s cool how you are integrating all of these organizations together. An architect can build a plan based on systematic risk; how will you plan for the unsystematic risk, such as the role of online media?

    Comment by Kunal Anand -

  47. Mark, is there a way of getting this kind of unbiased information into our colleges and universities. We are an uninformed society making decisions via sound bits and hype. We need much more factual information sources to be able to make informed decisions. We can not look to media to supply factual information without a political slant attached. I have voted already but would have liked more factual information in a format that may be portable (DVD) and or transferable to share with others. Higher education may be susceptible to the delivery format of this kind of information to enhance the critical thinking skills of students. If colleges can require students to buy over priced out dated biased books there must be a place to start the discussion for including current unscripted factual information to the college student at a fair cost. This is just one arena I can see information like this working to better educate future leaders. Your great wealth continues to also bring about noble and great deeds. Thank you!

    Comment by salmon -

  48. is this what is referred to as independent film making and distribution? I thought that was a high risk play.. if so.. why take the risk?

    Comment by Mike Verinder -

  49. Mark,

    Be progressive like you speak of on your blog. Make Voices of Iraq a 700mb Xvid and release it via torrent.

    Be a pioneer.

    Comment by shane schaetz -

  50. I really think this movie should be played on TV if at all possible. I really think that people have a skewed view of Iraq based on our media’s coverage and this movie could help to give people a more accurate read on the situation there. Unfortunately, not enough people will be able to see it with the limited release planned before the election. If at all possible, put it on Cable or Network television!

    The trailer looks awsome…


    Comment by Sarb -

  51. Hey Mark,

    This is what is great about commerce. The fact that competition is always better for the consumer. I look forward to seeing the movies!

    Go Bush!


    Comment by Tim K -

Comments are closed.