Michael Moore (courtesy United Artists)
Don’t blame Hollywood for Sen. John Kerry’s defeat in the presidential election last month, says filmmaker Michael Moore, who insists activist entertainers made the race closer than it would have been otherwise.
Reacting to charges that his polarizing activism galvanized Republicans, Moore — director of the provacative, anti-Bush film “Fahrenheit 9/11” — contended Kerry lost the race simply because he was “not the best candidate.”
“For the last month, we’ve had to listen to a lot of conservative pundits talk about how Democrats need to run away from Hollywood,” Moore told reporters before addressing the Los Angeles World Affairs Council.
“It’s actually the opposite,” he said, according to Reuters. “Democrats need to embrace Hollywood because this is where they need to come to learn how to tell a story.”
President Bush “had a more compelling story to tell and the Democrats didn’t, and that has to change,” Moore insisted.
The filmmaker is engaged in a series of public appearances ahead of the Oscar nominations.
His film, considered an Academy Award contender, was a catalyst along with the efforts of other Hollywood liberals that brought millions of new Democrat voters to the polls, he believes.
“What ‘Fahrenheit 9/11’ and Bruce Springsteen and MoveOn and all the other people that were working during this election, what we did was we prevented a Bush landslide,” Moore said. “We’re all going to continue to do this in the near future. No one’s giving up.”
Moore said America “likes to vote for Hollywood,” citing Republican movie figures such as California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and former President Ronald Reagan.
“And I think we need to turn to Hollywood, because who wouldn’t vote for Tom Hanks or Paul Newman or Robert Redford or Oprah?”
Moore reaffirmed his desire to do a “Fahrenheit 9/11” sequel on Bush’s second term, calling Republicans “arrogant” in victory.
“They’re going to overreach, they’re going to go too far, and I think we want to be there with our cameras to capture that.”