“There are definitely movies that I can’t be in because the Chinese will say, ‘Not with him,’ Richard told The Hollywood Reporter. ‘I recently had an episode where someone said they could not finance a film with me because it would upset the Chinese’…China’s disdain for Richard stems from the 67-year-old’s political remarks at the 1993 Academy Awards.” The Chinese film market is now second in size to that of the US.
The following job opportunities are currently listed on the sites referenced below. Additional libertarian jobs may be found here.
“The Texas Public Policy Foundation seeks an Associate Filmmaker and Editor to help tell the story of the Texas Public Policy Foundation, its work, its people, and its mission to a statewide, national, and international audience. For over a quarter-century, the Foundation has sought to defend liberty in the Lone Star State — and to make its lessons available and applicable to the rest of the country. This position, part of our top-flight Communications team, will play a critical role in ensuring that our achievements and our principles are available and accessible to any American with a television or Internet connection.”
“The American Enterprise Institute is seeking a video editor to play an integral role within the communications department, translating research from top policy experts into digestible online video for a wide range of audiences. The video editor will collaborate with producers and other editors during all phases of production to help create more compelling and engaging content for our well-established YouTube channel and other platforms. All applicants must be well-versed in the Adobe Creative Suite, with a strong focus on After Effects, Premiere, and Photoshop within a Mac environment. The ideal candidate should have an exceptional eye for graphic design; the ability to create complex motion graphics and animations to complement AEI’s research is vital. Must have a firm understanding of various compression formats and impeccable organizational skills to maintain video archives and digital files.”
“The Heritage Foundation’s Media Production Coordinator is responsible for video production, coordinating interviews, and assists with other multimedia projects, including podcasts, photo research, livestreaming, and interactive content. The Media Production Coordinator ensures that video projects produced for The Heritage Foundation and its multimedia news outlet, The Daily Signal, meet editorial and branding standards and tell compelling and distinctive stories.”
Have you seen a libertarian film lately? Somewhere along the way, the Moving Picture Institute (MPI) may have had a hand in it. MPI supports libertarian filmmakers in numerous ways, from training to internships to financial support. “The Moving Picture Institute produces and promotes films that make an impact on people’s understanding of individual rights, limited government, and free markets, and supports freedom-oriented filmmakers at every phase of their careers.” Want to help? Right now, MPI has two positions available:
Director of Major Gifts (Remote Office)
“Responsible for cultivating donors and securing major gifts from individuals and foundations. While there is a small office established in Los Angeles, California, most of the employees at our client organization work in their home office, remote to one another.”
Talent Outreach Coordinator (Remote Office/LA Preferred)
“Identify and attract new filmmakers and film projects to the MPI fold, act as a liaison with existing MPI filmmakers, and assist with educational endeavors, such as classes and seminars.”
“Freedom’s back is against the wall, battered by a hostile culture, while its supporters are too focused on arcane policy debates to wield the only tool that can really make a difference — the imagination. Meanwhile, one lone nonprofit, Taliesin Nexus, leads a ragtag team of passionate filmmakers as they strive to make their pro-liberty voices heard…We teach filmmakers of promise by leveraging our network of Hollywood pros to create educational opportunities through various workshops, internships, film labs, and networking events. Currently – we are looking to fill these positions in our Los Angeles office:”
Don’t judge The Promise by it’s online ratings. The film, which tells the story of the Armenian Holocaust, is getting trolled in a big way by deniers, possibly backed by the Turkish government. Per the Washington Post, “The Promise doesn’t officially open in theaters until Friday. But on IMDb, a website where people can rate movies, the film has received more than 120,000 ratings — nearly 62,000 of them the lowest: one-star.” Historians say that as many as 1.5 million Armenians were murdered by the Turkish government, but the latter has organized a concerted effort to deny that. This is the first major film to break through the stonewalling.
Citizen Jane: Battle for the City is a documentary about Jane Jacobs, a journalist who discovered spontaneous order in city development — and who fought to a standstill NYC’s vision of a bulldozed, centrally-planned urban landscape. About her the Mises Institute wrote: “The conclusions she reached…were remarkably similar to those Ludwig von Mises and Friedrich Hayek had reached earlier by different routes. A city is, at base, a marketplace. It is a spontaneous order. It cannot be planned. The people who try to plan cities have failed above all because they have not comprehended the way the spontaneous order of cities works.”
“The Promise, the grandest big-screen portrayal ever made about the mass killings of Armenians during World War I, has been rated by more than 111,300 people on IMDb — a remarkable total considering it doesn’t open in theaters until Friday and has thus far been screened only a handful of times publicly.” It seems the film is getting trolled, and in more ways than one.
“Cuban filmmaker Carlos Lechuga’s political drama Santa y Andres has been yanked from competition at the 18th Havana Film Festival New York, which runs from March 30 to April 7…The festival bowed to pressure from Cuban Film Institute, ICAIC.”
Deadline has published an account of the little-known back story of The Interview, a film that mocks the North Korean government. It seems that the traditional mega-companies who normally distribute such films balked at showing it for fear of getting cyber-attached by North Korea. Per Deadline, “an effort by smaller companies that acted quickly, somewhat bravely, and often in response to the personal conviction of principals who were offended by the notion that North Korea might actually curtail free expression [saved the day].”
With respect to movies in production, based on historical experience, some of these will ultimately be completed, and others may never get off the ground. They are listed in reverse chronological order, based on latest announcements.
Two good sites for news on upcoming films are ComingSoon.net and Metacritic.com. A good site for upcoming DVDs is DVDReleaseDates.com. Also the Political Film Society sometimes identifies films of interest.
Awaiting DVD Release
4-13-17 | King of the Jungle
According to an article in International Business Times, John McAfee, who contended for the LP Presidential nomination in 2016 (Gary Johnson won that spot), and who is best known for the cyber-security software sold under his name, will be the subject of a new film titled King of the Jungle. McAfee will be played Johnny Depp.
1-2-17 | Bad Boys of Brexit
Brexit took the UK, and for that matter the entire world, by surprise. The political back story behind its success is now being considered for a major motion picture. The series of events behind Brexit’s success was told in the book The Bad Boys of Brexit: Tales of Mischief, Mayhem & Guerrilla Warfare in the EU Referendum Campaign. That book, which tracks the ups and downs of the campaign, is now being considered by Warner Brothers for the big screen. Per the Daily Telegraph, an agent for the book stated: “We have had some very serious Hollywood people in touch with us who are going to buy the rights to the book. They want to buy the option on it.”
11-30-16 | No Safe Spaces
Per the Hollywood Reporter: “‘College campuses are supposed to be where diversity of opinion is celebrated, not silenced,’ said Carolla, who will star with talk-show host Dennis Prager in a film called No Safe Spaces.” The documentary also has a homepage.
11-23-16 | Stranger in a Strange Land
According to Deadline, “Paramount Television and Universal Cable Productions are developing Robert Heinlein’s popular 1961 science fiction novel Stranger in a Strange Land as a TV series for Syfy.” Stranger in a Strange Land is considered one of Heinlein’s more libertarian works, and won the Libertarian Futurist Society’s Prometheus Hall of Fame Award for libertarian fiction. On its initial release, the New York Times called it a “disastrous mishmash of science fiction, laborious humor, dreary social satire and cheap eroticism.” Fans disagreed, and bought the novel in such quantities as to make it the first science-fiction title to appear on The New York Times Book Review’s best-seller list.
11-4-16 | Starship Troopers
A Starship Troopers remake is in the works at Sony Pictures, reports The Hollywood Reporter. “The studio is not remaking the  film but is said to be going back to the original Heinlein novel for an all-new take. No personnel from the 1997 film are involved,” according to the article. Before Robert Heinlein wrote the libertarian classics The Moon is a Harsh Mistress and Stranger in a Strange Land, he wrote Starship Troopers. The latter, being essentially about war, is at odds with Heinlein’s otherwise individualist reputation, but will likely be of interest to libertarian fans regardless.
10-16-16 | Dark Web
The Coen Brothers — who won the “Best Screenplay” Academy Awards for both No Country for Old Men and Fargo, — have agreed to write the screenplay for Dark Web, a movie about Ross Ulbricht and his online illegal drug marketplace “Silk Road.” The 29-year-old Ulbricht, a libertarian and follower of Ludwig Von Mises, believed bringing the drug trade online would make the world a better place by eliminating the violence associated with it. He was eventually captured and sentenced to life imprisonment. His case has become a cause celebre among libertarians.
3-18-16 | The Fountainhead
“I have been working on The Fountainhead,” Hollywood Director Zach Snyder confirmed. “I’ve always felt like The Fountainhead was such a thesis on the creative process and what it is to create something. Warner Bros. owns [Ayn Rand’s] script and I’ve just been working on that a little bit.”
1-28-16 | Operation Auschwitz
Never heard of Auschwitz hero Witold Pilecki? You soon will. A film about him is finally being made. “In September 1940, Pilecki proposed a daring plan that in hindsight appears nearly unimaginable: he would arrange to be arrested in the hope that the Nazis, instead of executing him, might send him to the Auschwitz camp where he could gather information and form a resistance group from the inside.” [h/t Leonard Read]
1-26-16 | Little House on the Prarie
Once referred to by the Boston Globe as “Little Libertarians on the Prairie,” the Laura Ingalls Wilder stories are now to be made into a film.
11-2-15 | Atlas Shrugged
Just announced in The New York Times: Albert S. Ruddy, whose credits include The Godfather, plans to make a six- to eight-hour TV version of Atlas Shrugged. He has been trying to get the rights for 40 years. “The main thing, Mr. Ruddy said, is to honor Ms. Rand’s insistence on making a film for the future. That means redrawing its capitalists and creators, who go on strike against creeping collectivism…’When you look at guys like Jeff Bezos, he’s not only doing Amazon, he wants to colonize Mars,’ Mr. Ruddy said. He spoke by telephone last week of his plan for a mini-series in which an Internet blackout led by Bezos-like figures might shut down cellphones, banks and almost everything else…”
11-2-15 | Incredibles 2
Brad Bird, whose work often has suggestions of Ayn Randian influence, is working on a sequel to The Incredibles, according to the Hollywood Reporter.
The true story of Bassem Youssef, a cardiologist turned comedian, who publicly criticized and mocked Egypt’s corrupt government — at great personal risk. Tickling Giants credits: [Dir: Sara Taksler/ Bassem Youssef/ 111 min/ Documentary/ Freedom of Speech/ Egypt]
External Reviews of Tickling Giants
“There’s a lot to laugh at, and to learn from, in Tickling Giants, a documentary that starts off by telling the story of one man and ends up speaking volumes about satire, freedom of expression and political pressure.”
–New York Times
“Tickling Giants provides a comprehensive examination of Youssef’s career highs and lows while providing a vivid personal portrait of its subject whose cheerfulness and resolve began to wither in the face of constant threats to himself and his family.”
How to See It
“In the midst of the Egyptian Arab Spring, Bassem Youssef makes a decision that’s every mother’s worst nightmare… He leaves his job as a heart surgeon to become a full-time comedian. Dubbed, “The Egyptian Jon Stewart,” Bassem creates the satirical show, Al Bernameg. The weekly program quickly becomes the most viewed television program in the Middle East, with 30 million viewers per episode. [By contrast] The Daily Show with Jon Stewart averaged two million viewers.”
–Tickling Giantsi (homepage)
Bruce Majors, writing for The Federalist, discusses libertarian undertones in Buffy the Vampire Slayer, a series created and written by Joss Wheden, who also created and wrote the very libertarian Firefly series. “The writers at Buffy actually knocked government and statism often…This isn’t surprising, since Joss Whedon (who is a liberal, not a libertarian) always has libertarianish heroes in his work.”
“We have to care what people think of us,” Comey said at a showing of the new series, Inside the FBI: New York, at the Newseum in Washington, DC. “The faith and confidence of the American people is the bedrock,” he said. “We did a lot last year that confused people,” Comey admitted, speaking of the presidential election.