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British network will show hot-button Bush scenario

September 02, 2006|Tina Daunt | Times Staff Writer

A British cable network plans to broadcast a controversial new film that depicts the fictional assassination of President George W. Bush.

The head of More4 says it will air "Death of a President," by British filmmaker Gabriel Range, on Oct. 9. The film makes its premiere at the prestigious Toronto Film Festival on Sept. 10. So far, no one has picked up the rights to show the 90-minute movie in the U.S.

The film combines archival footage of Bush as well as computer-generated images and, some say, makes the assassination scene look shockingly real.

"It's an extraordinarily gripping and powerful piece of work, a drama constructed like a documentary that looks back at the assassination of George Bush as the starting point for a very gripping detective story," Peter Dale told reporters in London.

He said the movie is "not sensationalistic or simplistic but a very thought-provoking, powerful drama."

"I hope people will see that the intention behind it is good," More4's Dale added.

News of the movie, however, was greeted this week with a barrage of criticism.

Thomas Lifson -- editor of the political blog the American Thinker -- called the movie "political pornography." "We are moving down a slippery slope, and our civilization is getting less civilized," Lifson wrote Friday.

The Washington Post reported that nearly every British newspaper Friday carried images of the film's depiction of the assassination.

White House officials declined to discuss the matter, saying, "We won't dignify this with a response," according to a statement. Toronto Film Festival officials did not return calls.

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tina.daunt@latimes.com

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