‘House party’ draws dozens | TheUnion.com

‘House party’ draws dozens

Grass Valley resident Anne Moore blushed Monday evening when her filmmaker brother, Michael Moore, acknowledged her and the Grass Valley group who gathered to participate in an online interactive forum that drew more than 35,000 people nationwide.

The cheer that erupted from the dozens of Nevada County residents drowned out Michael Moore’s exact words, but the enthusiastic group seated on lawn chairs and stools at a private home on Footwall Drive did not seem to care.

Speakers were set up to broadcast Michael Moore answering questions from people who were at more than 2,000 similar “house parties” on the West Coast. A small computer screen sat at the front of the Grass Valley crowd, and attendees mostly listened to the comments and questions about Moore’s film, “Fahrenheit 9/11.”

The event was sponsored by liberal-oriented MoveOn.org, an Internet-based political group that describes itself as “a catalyst for a new kind of grassroots involvement, supporting busy, but concerned citizens in finding their political voice.” MoveOn.org claims a nationwide network of more than 2,000,000 online activists.

The purpose of the event was to “hear Michael and get the mobilization process started,” said Loraine Webb, the local event organizer.

Michael Moore’s message was clear. He said people must be active in influencing others to watch the documentary and to vote in the presidential election. He said he is confident if people watch the film, they will change their minds about President George W. Bush.

“I think most anybody who was on the fence before (watching the film) got off the fence,” Michael Moore said.

He asked people to host voter-registration parties on July 11 with the hopes they would collectively be able to register 10,000 voters every half hour.

After the hour-long interactive dialogue with the filmmaker on Monday night, Webb led a discussion was about how they could get the vote out locally. Only a handful of people had seen “Fahrenheit 9/11” – which has not yet premiered in Nevada County – but many were aware of the film’s anti-Bush message.

“I think everybody who came here tonight felt a level of frustration,” said local filmmaker Jacob Freydont-Attie.

Anne Moore said she knows her brother will be the target of even more criticism because of the film.

“They have to destroy either Michael, the movie, or both,” Anne Moore said. She then explained how they could defend the film and her brother, saying the most important thing is “there is nothing in it that is factually incorrect.”

“Fahrenheit 9/11” debuts in Nevada County at 7:30 p.m. the nights of July 4 and 5 at the Nevada Theater. Starting Tuesday, there will be four showings daily of the film at the Sierra Cinema.

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