As he brings “Sicko” to U.S. theaters, Michael Moore knows that the insurance industry and Big Pharma are lying in wait — ready to swift-boat him, and distort the film’s message, at every possible opportunity.
But watch out: Moore will be packing PR heat, too.
Believing the best defense is a good offense, “Sicko” producer The Weinstein Company (TWC) has hired some big guns to defend the film from the coming corporate onslaught.
According to PRWeek,
(TWC) has brought on Chris Lehane, who worked in the Clinton White House as well as for Al Gore’s 2000 presidential run. The studio has also hired New York-based Ken Sunshine, and continues to work with Matthew Hiltzik, president and CEO of Freud Communications.
Lehane has stated that he does not intend to sit back and see what comes at him. As he put it,
As opposed to sitting back [in dealing with an] industry that is well known for prevaricating, distorting, and misleading in order to maintain its death grip over our society — we [will] take the fight to them.
Also, the team has said that it will release internal documents provided by whistleblowers within the healthcare industry that will bring attention to drug and insurance companies’ conduct. Moore hopes that this will pave the way for future whistleblowers to step up and be heard.
Meanwhile, here’s a sample of early trashing from Big Pharma — in this case, Ken Johnson of PhRMA:
A review of America’s healthcare system should be balanced, thoughtful, and well-researched to pin down what works and what needs to be improved. You won’t get that from Michael Moore.
Yeah, Ken — we’ll just wait on you and the PhRMA to figure that out for us.