For the past few years, Sarah Palin has been making a movie about herself. Actually, she hasn't been making it, but she initiated the project. From Real Clear Politics:
Shortly after Republicans swept last November to a historic victory in which Sarah Palin was credited with playing a central role, the former Alaska governor pulled aside her close aide, Rebecca Mansour, to discuss a hush-hush assignment: Reach out to conservative filmmaker Stephen K. Bannon with a request. Ask him if he would make a series of videos extolling Palin's governorship and laying to rest lingering questions about her controversial decision to resign from office with a year-and-a-half left in her first term. It was this abdication, Palin knew, that had made her damaged goods in the eyes of some Republicans who once were eager to get behind her potential 2012 presidential campaign.
The response was more positive than Palin could have hoped for. He'd make a feature-length movie, Bannon told Mansour, and he insisted upon taking complete control and financing it himself -- to the tune of $1 million.
To anyone who thinks she's a lightweight, or not-so-bright, think again. This is some gutsy, long-term thinking. With an emphasis on gutsy:
Though she did not have any editorial role in the project, Palin facilitated access for Bannon and his film crew to key Alaskan defenders who were involved with the major achievements of her administration, and the filmmaker spent several weeks in the 49th state gathering archival film and conducting research and interviews for the project. He and his team took extraordinary measures to keep their endeavor secret.
The movie, according to many sources, is done. And it's impressive. It's a large-lens look at Palin's life, time in office, and genuine accomplishments.
It's also a fairly complete look at the controversial governor. Again, from RCP:
To convey Bannon's view of the pathology behind Palin-hatred, the film begins with a fast-paced sequence of clips showing some of the prominent celebrities who have used sexist, derogatory and generally vicious language to describe her.
Rosie O'Donnell, Matt Damon, Bill Maher, David Letterman, and Howard Stern all have brief cameos before comedian Louis C.K. goes off on a particularly ugly anti-Palin riff.
"I hate her more than anybody," C.K. says at the end of his tirade, the rest of which is unfit to print here.
Bannon intends to release two versions of the film. An unrated edition will contain some obscene anti-Palin language and imagery, while the other is targeted to a general audience and will seek a PG-13 rating from the Motion Picture Association of America.
Again, this is a canny move, both from the perspective of the filmmaker -- more controversy = more ticket sales -- and from the point of view of Palin. The unhinged hatred people have for her makes her even more popular with some people. Even people like me, who have reservations about her presidential run.
And she is running for president.
How do I know?
When's the premiere of the movie, you ask? Next month.
Where's the premiere of the movie, you ask? Iowa.
Sarah Palin is running for president. And this film is her opening shot. From all reports, it's a big one. Despite my misgivings, I have to say: I wish her well, and I'm rooting for her. I just haven't figured out exactly what I'm rooting for her to do.