|-Anita Gates, NY Times||-Andrew O'Hehir, Salon.com||-Ebert & Roeper|
June 1, 2005 (download press release in .pdf format)
NEW DOCUMENTARY FROM ‘OUTFOXED’ PRODUCER/DIRECTOR SET FOR FALL RELEASE USING INNOVATIVE GRASSROOTS STRATEGY
LOS ANGELES – With the Wal-Mart Annual Meeting set for Friday (June 3), and criticism of the corporate giant reaching a crescendo, Robert Greenwald, producer and director of Outfoxed: Rupert Murdoch’s War on Journalism, announced today his new documentary, WAL-MART: The High Cost of Low Price, to be released this fall. The new film, which will employ a ground-breaking grassroots distribution strategy, is the first documentary from Greenwald’s new media company, Brave New Films.
“This is a movie about American families and American ideals, a movie about one corporation crushing the American dream for millions of ordinary people – right or left, republican or democrat, red or blue,” said Greenwald. “Wal-Mart is systematically destroying the fabric of our nation, pretending to be the great American workplace while at the same time showing thinly veiled contempt for working families, small business owners, and the very people it employs.”
WAL-MART takes the viewer on a deeply personal journey into the every day lives of families struggling to fight against a goliath. From a family business owner in the Midwest to a preacher in California, from workers in Florida to a poet in Mexico, dozens of film crews on three continents bring the story of an assault on families and American values. Current and former employees, managers and executives will divulge the corporation’s inner-workings. WAL-MART is based on individual human beings, all over the world, at all levels of society, telling their story in very personal terms.
The new film will be released this fall using a grassroots strategy designed to reach a broad audience without letting traditional barriers, gatekeepers and marketing stand in the way. Groups from every political persuasion are coming together to support and distribute WAL-MART – from African-American Ministers in Action to the Petroleum Marketers Association of America, from the National Education Association to the American Independent Business Alliance.
“Hundreds of current and former Wal-Mart employees and executives have already come forward to tell their stories, and we expect thousands more will do so in the near future,” Greenwald said “It is the people who Wal-Mart has hurt, the families it has destroyed, who are the backbone of this movie and this movement.”
By utilizing the latest technologies, collaborating with numerous groups and building a growing network of dedicated volunteer field producers, Brave New Films will produce and distribute entertaining and engaging films, television, radio, music, books and blogs outside the corporate system, building essential media infrastructure for long-term social progress.
AVAILABLE FOR INTERVIEW:
Robert Greenwald is the director/producer of "Outfoxed: Rupert Murdoch's War on Journalism" (2004), a documentary exposing the right-wing bias of Fox News.
Greenwald is also the executive producer of a trilogy of "Un" documentaries: "Unprecedented: The 2000 Presidential Election" (2002), directed by Richard Ray Perez and Joan Sekler; "Uncovered: The Iraq War" (2003), directed by Greenwald; and the upcoming "Unconstitutional" (2004), directed by Nonny de la Pena, about the post 9/11 erosion of American civil liberties.
Greenwald's films have garnered 25 Emmy nominations, four cable ACE Award nominations, two Golden Globe nominations, the Peabody Award, the Robert Wood Johnson Award, and eight Awards of Excellence from the Film Advisory Board. He was awarded the 2002 Producer of the Year Award by the American Film Institute.
Dan Gilligan began his service as President of The Petroleum Marketers Association of America (PMAA) in 1998. Prior to joining PMAA, Dan's diverse career as a lobbyist and association executive spanned 22 years. Dan has now served as CEO of three national trade associations and one state trade association. The industries Dan has represented are numerous and include recreation vehicles, campgrounds, modular housing and steel container manufacturers. Dan believes his experience in each of those industries prepared him to meet the myriad of challenges he would face representing petroleum marketers. Having studied and learned the operations of five distinct industries, he will tell you petroleum marketing is by far the most complicated and challenging.
PMAA is a national federation of 45 state and regional trade associations and it's single, most important mission is to collectively represent 8000 independent petroleum marketing companies on matters pending before the U.S. Congress and the federal regulatory agencies. Petroleum marketers are highly legislated, regulated and litigated. It is a business where public policy changes can dramatically help or hinder the viability of independent marketers. It is Dan's job to advance the helpful policies and resist those that hinder.
Dan has earned and maintained his certification as a Certified Association Executive (CAE) which is awarded by the American Society of Association Executives. Dan is a native of Indiana where he earned his BS Degree from Ball State University. He and his wife Beth moved to the Washington, DC area in 1986 and now reside in Fairfax, Virginia.
Rev. Nelson Johnson
Rev. Nelson Johnson is the director of the Beloved Community Center and Senior Pastor at Faith Community Church in Greensboro, NC. He is one of the founders and key leaders of the Pulpit Forum that was instrumental in the Greensboro K-Mart worker struggle.
Rev. Johnson is active in supporting worker initiatives throughout North Carolina and has been recognized for his long service to community. He has been honored with such awards as the Bennett College Human Relations Award; the National NAACP Democracy, Freedom and Human Rights Award; the Greensboro NAACP John B. Ervin Service Award; the National AFL-CIO Faith Leader Award; the Greensboro Human Relations Service Award; and the University of Massachusetts Labor Relations and Research Center Robert Haynes Award. Rev. Johnson is affiliated with the Progressive National Baptist Convention, Inc.