#Occupy: The Movie, the Premiere, the Security Guard

#Occupy: The Movie, the Premiere, the Security Guard

#Occupy: The Movie, the Premiere, the Security Guard

Weigel
Reporting on Politics and Policy.
Aug. 30 2012 4:30 PM

#Occupy: The Movie, the Premiere, the Security Guard

TAMPA -- The biggest draw at Liberty Plaza was not a tribute to Jack Kemp, or a free party for lawyers. It was a screening of Occupy Unmasked, the upcoming documentary from Steve Bannon. A bit of Breitbart kremlinology -- Bannon co-runs the late media mogul's empire, alongside the low-key Larry Solov. Breitbart himself appears in the Occupy film, as does some of his video. "When we started talking about making this movie," said Solov, "Andrew wrote 20 pages of notes. Andrew had ADD. He never wrote 20 pages about anything!"

But an Occupy film, in August 2012, feels less like an expose and more like closure. The protests that were expected to clog Tampa petered out completely. A "Romneyville," built to make an 80-year-old joke out of the Republican candidate, was thinly peopled. The ongoing protests of Ron Paul delegates turned out to be the grassroots story of the week. You could feel that in the movie tent, as Code Pink's Medea Benjamin left the barricades to check out a movie calculated to drive her crazy.

Initially, security tried to keep out Benjamin. Bannon saw her and waved her in. "We want to have an exchange of ideas," he explained. When Rep. Michele Bachmann arrived for the movie, though, a stern and plaid-clad security guard kept throwing his body between the congresswoman and the globe-trotting protester.

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I couldn't stay for the entire movie, but I caught the first hour. Occupy Unmasked begins with a short video history of the debt ceiling crisis. Barack Obama's low approval number, 39 percent, keeps flashing on the screen, to tell us that his presidency was about to collapse. Then a Guy Fawkes mask appears, and inside its blank eye -- a quote from Saul Alinsky. Breitbart and a team of journalists from his empire -- Lee Stranahan, Brandon Dabry, Mandy Nagy -- appear onscreen to tell how journalists enabled the Occupiers and created a story out of nothing, until the story became a problem for them.

David Weigel is a reporter for the Washington Post.