‘Obama’s America’ Director Emulates Michael Moore to Boost Movie
With his election-year release of “2016: Obama’s America,” commentator Dinesh D’Souza is borrowing the strategy of a political opposite, Michael Moore, to promote the critical documentary film.
Touted by radio host Rush Limbaugh and the Hoover Institution’s Thomas Sowell, “Obama’s America” has been building momentum since opening in a single Houston theater in July. This weekend it expands to 1,090 locations and is expected to take in $5.8 million, probably enough to reach the top 10, according to boxoffice.com, an industry researcher.
D’Souza, who based the documentary on his best-selling 2010 book “The Roots of Obama’s Rage,” was thinking about Moore’s successful marketing of “Fahrenheit 9/11,” the documentary about the administration of former President George W. Bush, released during the 2004 election year, as he developed “Obama’s America.”
“You had a controversial president, Bush, you had one half the country on the fence and Michael Moore dropped the film right in the middle of the national debate,” D’Souza said in an interview. “I thought, now the conditions look eerily similar, so I’ll take a page out of Michael Moore’s book.”
The film, made for $2.5 million, is resonating with a conservative audience energized by President Barack Obama’s re- election battle against Republican challenger Mitt Romney, said Phil Contrino, editor of boxoffice.com. “Obama’s America” led all films in advance ticket sales yesterday on fandango.com, the online ticket vendor, the company said.
“Obama’s America” is benefiting from the timing of its expansion, three days before the opening of the Republican National Convention in Tampa, Florida.