The following biography
Michael Francis Moore (born April 23, 1954) is an
Academy Award winning American film director, author, social commentator, and
political humorist. He is widely known for his outspoken, critical views on
globalization, large corporations, gun violence, the Iraq War, and the George W.
Born: April 23, 1954
Flint, Michigan, United States
Occupation: film director, author, social
Born in Flint, Michigan, Michael Moore grew up in
the city of Davison. At the time the neighboring city of Flint was home to many
General Motors factories, where his mother was a secretary, and both his father
and grandfather were auto workers. His uncle was one of the founders of the
United Automobile Workers labor union and participated in the famous Flint
Moore, an Irish American, was brought up Roman
Catholic and attended a Diocesan seminary at age 14. He then attended Davison
High School, where he was active in both drama and debate, graduating in
1972. That same year, he ran for and won a seat on the Davison school board on a
platform based on firing the high school's principal, John B McKenna, and vice
principal, Kanje Cohen. By the end of his term both had resigned.
Moore is also an Eagle Scout, the highest rank
awarded by the Boy Scouts of America, and an achievement of which he is still
very proud. For his Eagle Project, he filmed a documentary pointing out various
safety hazards in his community.
After dropping out of the University of
Michigan-Flint (where he wrote for the student newspaper The Michigan Times) and
working for a day at the General Motors plant, at 22 he founded the
alternative weekly magazine The Flint Voice, which soon changed its name to The
Michigan Voice. In 1986, when Moore became the editor of Mother Jones, a liberal
political magazine, he moved to California and The Michigan Voice was shut down.
In 2003, the Star-Ledger printed an opinion piece by Paul Mulshine, where he
quoted Paul Berman, who stated that Moore had been fired following a series of
clashes with people on the magazine's staff, including a dispute over Moore's
refusal to publish an article by Berman that was critical of the Sandinistas'
human rights record. Before Moore's arrival, the magazine had commissioned the
article. Moore later sued for wrongful dismissal, seeking $2 million. He
finally accepted a settlement of $58,000 — the amount of anticipated trial costs
— from the magazine's insurance company. Some of this money provided partial
funding for his first film project, Roger and Me.
Moore has been married to producer Kathleen Glynn
(born April 10, 1958 in Flint) since 1990. They now live in New York City.
Natalie (born 1981) is Michael's stepdaughter. He has no other children.
He has also dabbled in acting, following a 2000
supporting role in Lucky Numbers as the cousin of Lisa Kudrow's character, who
agrees to be part of the scheme concocted by John Travolta's character.
Currently Moore leads Michigan's annual Traverse
City Film Fest, which is also the location of the State Theater, a classic venue
that Moore (as of 2006) has been attempting to purchase.
Films and awards
Roger & Me: Moore first became famous for his
controversial 1989 film, Roger & Me, a documentary about what happened to Flint,
Michigan after General Motors closed its factories and opened new ones in
Mexico, where the workers were paid much less. Since then Moore has been known
as a critic of the neoliberal view of globalization. "Roger" is Roger B. Smith,
former CEO and president of General Motors. Moore was largely taught the craft
of filmmaking by his cinematographer Kevin Rafferty, who is ironically also a
first cousin of President George W. Bush. The influence of Rafferty, who
co-directed the 1982 cult classic documentary film The Atomic Café, can be seen
in Moore's satirical use of archival footage taken from vintage B-movies,
television commercials, and newsreels that has since become a hallmark of his
Canadian Bacon: In 1995, Moore released a satirical
film, Canadian Bacon, which features a fictional US president (played by Alan
Alda) engineering a fake war with Canada in order to boost his popularity. It is
noted for containing a number of Canadian and American stereotypes, and for
being Moore's only non-documentary film. The film is also the last featuring
Canadian-born actor John Candy, and also features a number of cameos by other
Canadian actors. It should be mentioned that in the film several potential
enemies for America's next great campaign are discussed by the president and his
cabinet (the scene was strongly influenced by the Kubrick film, Dr.
Strangelove). The President comments that declaring war on Canada was as
ridiculous as declaring war on international terrorism. His military advisor
(played by Rip Torn) quickly rebuffs this idea, saying that no one would care
about "...a bunch of guys driving around blowing up rent-a-cars".
The Big One: In 1997, Moore directed The Big One,
which documents the tour publicizing his book Downsize This! Random Threats from
an Unarmed American, where he criticizes mass layoffs despite record corporate
profits. Among others, he targets Nike for outsourcing shoe production to
Bowling for Columbine: Moore's 2002 film, Bowling
for Columbine, probes the culture of guns and violence in the United States.
Bowling for Columbine won the Anniversary Prize at the Cannes Film Festival and
France's Cesar Award as the Best Foreign Film. In the United States, it won the
2002 Academy Award for Documentary Feature. It also enjoyed great commercial and
critical success for a film of its type and became, at the time, the
highest-grossing mainstream-released documentary (a record later held by Moore's
Fahrenheit 9/11). It was praised by some for illuminating a subject slighted by
the mainstream media, but it was attacked by others who claim it is inaccurate
and misleading in its presentations and suggested interpretations of events.
Fahrenheit 9/11: Fahrenheit 9/11 examines America
in the aftermath of the September 11, 2001 attacks, particularly the record of
the Bush administration and alleged links between the families of George W. Bush
and Osama bin Laden. Fahrenheit was awarded the Palme d'Or, the top honor at the
Cannes Film Festival; it was the first documentary film to win the prize since
1956. Moore later announced that Fahrenheit 9/11 would not be in consideration
for the 2005 Academy Award for Documentary Feature, but instead for the Academy
Award for Best Picture. He stated he wanted the movie to be seen by a few
million more people, preferably on television, by election day. Since November 2
was less than nine months after the film's release, it would be disqualified for
the Documentary Oscar. Moore also said he wanted to be supportive of his
"teammates in non-fiction film." However, Fahrenheit received no Oscar
nomination for Best Picture. The title of the film alludes to the classic book
Fahrenheit 451 (about a future totalitarian state in which books are banned;
paper begins to burn at 451 degrees Fahrenheit) and the pre-release subtitle of
the film confirms the allusion: "The temperature at which freedom burns." At the
box office, Fahrenheit 9/11 remains the highest-grossing documentary of all
time, taking in close to $200 million worldwide, including United States box
office revenue of $120 million.
Sicko (filming): Moore is currently working on a
film about the American healthcare system from the viewpoint of mental
healthcare, focusing particularly on the managed-care and pharmaceutical
industries, under the working title Sicko. At least four major pharmaceutical
companies, Pfizer, Eli Lilly and Company, AstraZeneca and GlaxoSmithKline, have
ordered their employees not to grant any interviews to Moore.   
According to Moore on a letter at his website, "roads that often surprise us and
lead us to new ideas -- and challenge us to reconsider the ones we began with"
have caused some minor delays, and the film is set to be released sometime in
Fahrenheit 9/11½ (pre-production): On November 11,
2004 Moore told the Hollywood trade publication Daily Variety that he is also
planning a sequel to Fahrenheit 9/11. He said, "Fifty-one percent of the
American people lacked information [in this election], and we want to educate
and enlighten them. They weren't told the truth. We're communicators, and it's
up to us to start doing it now." The sequel, like the original, will concern
the war in Iraq and terrorism. Moore expects to complete Fahrenheit 9/11½ in
2007 or 2008.
Between 1994 and 1995, he directed and hosted the
television series TV Nation, which followed the format of news magazine shows
but covered topics they avoid. The series was aired on NBC in 1994 for 9
episodes and again for 8 episodes on FOX in 1995.
His other series was The Awful Truth, which
satirized actions by big corporations and politicians. It aired in 1999 and
Another 1999 series, Michael Moore Live, was aired
in the UK only on Channel 4, though it was broadcast from New York. This show
had a similar format to The Awful Truth, but also incorporated phone-ins and a
live stunt each week. The show was performed around midday local time, which due
to the time difference made it a late-night show in the UK.
In 1999 Moore won the Hugh M. Hefner First
Amendment Award in Arts and Entertainment, for being the executive producer and
host of The Awful Truth, where he was also described as "muckraker, author and
Moore has directed several music videos, including
two for Rage Against the Machine for songs from "The Battle of Los Angeles":
"Sleep Now in the Fire" and "Testify". He was threatened with arrest during the
shooting of "Sleep Now in the Fire", which was filmed on Wall Street; the city
of New York had denied the band permission to play there, although the band and
Moore had secured a federal permit to perform. 
He also directed the music videos for System of a
Down's "Boom!" and "All the Way to Reno (You're Gonna Be a Star)" by R.E.M..
Appearances in other documentaries
Michael Moore's brief appearance in Alex Jones'
Martial Law: 9/11 Rise of the Police State, Alex Jones prompts Michael Moore for
an answer as to why he did not mention any of the real issues about the
September 11, 2001 attacks in his film Fahrenheit 9/11. Specifically, why
Michael Moore did not mention why NORAD stood down. Michael Moore's reply was
simply, "Because it would be Un-American."
Moore appeared in the documentary The Yes Men, a
documentary about two men who pose as the World Trade Organization. He appears
during a segment concerning working conditions in Mexico and Latin America.
Moore was also interviewed for the 2004
documentary, The Corporation. One of his highlighted quotes was, "The problem is
the profit motive: for corporations, there's no such thing as 'enough'." 
Moore appeared in the 2006 documentary MADONNA I'm
going to tell you a secret. Chronicling the artist during her 2004 Re-Invention
World Tour, Moore attended her show in NYC at Madison Square Garden.
Writings and political views
Moore has authored three best-selling books:
Downsize This! (1996), about politics and corporate
crime in the United States,
Stupid White Men (2001), ostensibly a critique of
American domestic and foreign policy but, by Moore's own admission, "a book of
political humor," and
Dude, Where's My Country? (2003), an examination of
the Bush family's relationships with Saudi royalty, the Bin Laden family, and
the energy industry, and a call-to-action for liberals in the 2004 election.
After Moore's departure from Mother Jones, he
became an employee of Ralph Nader. He left Nader's employment on bad terms, but
Moore vociferously supported Nader's campaign for the United States presidency
In exchange for jumping in the show's "traveling
mosh pit," Republican Alan Keyes won the endorsement of Moore's television
series The Awful Truth in 2000, although Moore does not endorse Keyes' views.
Moore became a lifetime member of the National
Rifle Association after the Columbine High School Massacre.
In the 2004 election, Moore urged Nader not to run,
despite having supported him in 2000, so as not to split the liberal vote.
(Moore joined Bill Maher on the latter's television show in kneeling before
Nader to plead with him to stay out of the race.) In June 2004, Moore claimed he
is not a member of the Democratic party (although he registered as a Democrat in
1992 ). Although Moore endorsed General Wesley Clark for the Democratic
nomination on January 14, Clark withdrew from the primary race on February 11.
Moore drew attention when charging publicly that Bush was AWOL during his
service in the National Guard (see George W. Bush military service controversy).
Also, during an October 27 stop in Portland, OR, Moore called the private phone
number of radio host Lars Larson, given to him by a member of the audience.
Moore was a high-profile guest at the 2004
Democratic National Convention, prominently seated in a box with former
President Jimmy Carter and his wife. Moore also attended the 2004 Republican
National Convention, (for a daily column chronicling his impressions of the
convention in USA Today), where he was criticized in a speech by Republican
Senator John McCain as "a disingenuous film-maker". Moore smiled and waved as
people in the audience jeered at him after this comment but there was no bad
behavior from either side.
During September and October 2004, Moore spoke at
universities and colleges in swing states during his "Slacker Uprising Tour".
The tour gave away ramen and underwear to young people who promised to vote.
This provoked public denunciations from the Michigan Republican Party and
attempts to convince the government that Moore should be arrested for buying
votes, but since Moore did not tell the 'slackers' involved whom to vote for,
just to vote, district attorneys refused to get involved. The "Underwear" tour
was a popular success. Large numbers of young adults registered to vote, and by
a strong percentage voted for John Kerry (Kerry 54%, Bush 44%). Nonetheless, the
generally increased turnout in the election ensured that the percentage of youth
voting was little different than in 2000, albeit at a higher numerical level.
John Kerry eventually won the state of Michigan by 3%.
Quite possibly the most controversial stop during
the tour was Utah Valley State College in Orem, Utah. A fight for his right to
speak ensued and resulted in massive public debates and a media blitz. Death
threats, bribes and lawsuits followed. The event was chronicled in the
documentary film This Divided State.
With the 2004 election over, Moore continues to
collect information on the war in Iraq and the Bush administration.
Controversy and criticism
Moore's body of work continues to create
controversy and draw criticisms. Please see the wikipedia page Michael Moore
Depictions of Moore
In the 2004 satire film Team America: World Police,
a marionette representation of Moore surfaces as a suicide bomber who blows up
Team America's headquarters inside Mount Rushmore. He is later described as a
"giant socialist weasel."
In an episode of the television show Arrested
Development, "The One Where Michael Leaves," an unnamed obese documentary film
maker (revealed in a subsequent episode, "Out on a Limb", to have been a Michael
Moore impersonator doing a bit for Jimmy Kimmel Live) approaches Lucile asking
if she would enlist her son in the military. Michael Moore asked the same
question in Fahrenheit 9/11.
The 2004 Academy Awards opened with a satirical
short film in which the host, Billy Crystal, traditionally re-enacts the most
memorable scenes of 2003. Moore was depicted holding a camera amidst a battle
(the Battle of the Pelennor Fields from The Lord of the Rings: The Return of the
King film), and shouting, "Shame, shame on you hobbits, this war is fictitious!"
followed by a crushing from an Olliphaunt. In a similar vein, the parody film
"Fellowship 9/11" parodied Fahrenheit 9/11 using the Lord of the Rings films
as its basis.
Moore lent his voice to a parody of himself on The
Simpsons in the episode The President Wore Pearls; he was depicted as showing up
to Springfield Elementary School in support of a student strike. When
interviewed by Kent Brockman, he offered statistics. When Brockman asked him for
the statistics' source, Moore replied "Your mother!" 
In a September 2005 episode of the animated Family
Guy series, titled "The Perfect Castaway," Peter recalls a farting contest with
Michael Moore that develops into a parody of the "Dueling Banjos" scene from
Deliverance. An episode of American Dad later depicted the opening of a new
Michael Moore film in which he sleeps with Angelina Jolie on camera and Hailey
leaves in disgust over Moore's "selling out."
On  after aquiring enough money, you can buy a
Micheal Moore skin for your buddy as well as others from George W. Bush to John
Kerry that will say random sterotypical statements while doing numerous things
to the buddy.
His published work
List of books
Moore, Michael (1996). Downsize This! Random
Threats from an Unarmed American. Perennial (Harper Edition). ISBN
Moore, Michael; & Glynn, Kathleen (1998).
Adventures In A TV Nation. Perennial. ISBN 0-06-098809-6.
Moore, Michael (2002). Stupid White Men ...and
Other Sorry Excuses for the State of the Nation!. Regan Books. ISBN
Moore, Michael (2003). Dude, Where's My Country?.
Warner Books. ISBN 0-446-53223-1.
Moore, Michael (2004). Will They Ever Trust Us
Again?. Simon & Schuster. ISBN 0-7432-7152-1.
Moore, Michael (2004). The Official Fahrenheit 9/11
Reader. Simon & Schuster. ISBN 0-7432-7292-7.
List of films
Roger & Me (1989)
Pets or Meat: The Return to Flint (1992) (TV)
Canadian Bacon (1995)
The Big One (1997)
And Justice for All (1998)
Lucky Numbers (2000)
Bowling for Columbine (2002)
Fahrenheit 9/11 (2004) "Palme d'Or" in Cannes
Sicko (projected for 2007)
Fahrenheit 9/11½ (projected for 2007)
List of TV series
TV Nation (1994)
The Awful Truth (1999) Wikiquote has a collection
of quotations related to:
Michael MooreMichael Moore Live (1999)
1 Gary Strauss (June 20, 2004). The truth about
Michael Moore. USA Today. Retrieved on 2006-07-09.
2 Ron Sheldon (September 23, 1995). Exclusive
Interview with Michael Moore of TV Nation. People's Weekly World.
3 Paul Mulshine (March 30, 2003). A stupid white
man and a smart one. The Star-Ledger. Retrieved on 2006-07-09.
4 The Philadelphia Inquirer: Inqlings | Michael
Moore takes on Glaxo. Michael Klein, 30 September 2005. Archive accessed 9 July
5 Common Dreams News Center: Drug Firms are on the
Defense as Filmmaker Michael Moore Plans to Dissect Their Industry. Original
Article - Elaine Dutka, L.A. Times, December 22, 2004. Archive accessed August
6 Chicago Tribune: Michael Moore turns camera onto
health care industry. Bruce Japsen, 3 October 2004. Archive accessed 9 July
7 MichaelMoore.com: An Update from Michael Moore
(and an invitation to his film festival). Michael Moore, 7 July 2006. URL
accessed 9 July 2006.
8 Variety: Get ready for more Moore. Army Archerd,
10 November 2004. URL accessed 9 July 2006.
9 Green Left Weekly: Rage against Wall Street.
Michael Moore, via MichaelMoore.com, date unspecified. URL accessed 9 July 2006.
10 Who's Who. The Corporation Film.
11 Opinion Journal from the Wall Street Journal:
Unmoored from Reality. John Fund's Political Diary, 21 March 2003. URL accessed
29 August 2006.
12 This Divided State official website. Accessed 9
13 Fellowship 9/11. ifilm.
14 The President Wore Pearls (MP3). The Simpsons.
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