Network says airing Palin movie not about politics
NEW YORK (AP) — The ReelzChannel television network says it scheduled a pro-Sarah Palin documentary on the same weekend as HBO’s “Game Change” debut strictly for business considerations, not political ones.
“The Undefeated,” a Palin documentary by conservative filmmaker Stephen K. Bannon, will have its television premiere on Sunday. It will come 23 hours after HBO opens “Game Change,” based on the 2008 campaign book by Mark Halperin and John Heilemann, and starring Julianne Moore as Palin.
Stan Hubbard, ReelzChannel CEO, said he licensed “The Undefeated” for the same reason that his network aired “The Kennedys” miniseries last spring after it was dropped by the History channel — to draw attention to a nearly 6-year-old network with a low public profile. ReelzChannel is in 62 million homes, a little more than half the country.
“For a young network, public relations is important to us, which is why we hunt for opportunistic things,” Hubbard said.
Hubbard said he found the former Alaska governor and 2008 GOP vice presidential candidate a fascinating figure, but he wasn’t trying to lionize her.
“If HBO wanted to swap movies this weekend, I’d do that in a second,” he said.
Palin supporters have attacked “Game Change,” although it’s unclear whether any of them has seen it in advance. “The Undefeated” maker Bannon called it a “fictionalized hit-piece” and has praised ReelzChannel’s “courageous” decision to air his movie.
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