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George Clooney - "Good Night, and Good Luck"
The World and Career of George Clooney

Nick Clooney Runs For Congress

1. George Clooney

2. Lessons from home
3. Parlaying Movies - for $$$$$

4. Clooney / Tidbits
TVInews 107 George Clooney Takes Lessons from his Dad, Nick Clooney of Kentucky, in completing Edward R. Murrow's, "Good Night, and Good Luck," - by Parlaying Movies - for $$$$.




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A TVInews Photo: George Clooney taken at - People For The American Way.
39th Week of 2005 / As most people know, Kentucky has come up with some great actors, singers, inventors, politicians, whiskey, fried chicken and news anchors -- whose combined talents have become household words around the world.

Of course, actors George Clooney, Johnny Depp, and actress/singer, Rosemary Clooney fit right into the Hollywood show biz glitz; the "wireless telephone", invented by Nathan B. Stubblefield, is now carried by people, in their pockets, around the world. It is the face of Abraham Lincoln found on every $5 dollar bill, and the news anchors and journalists from Kentucky include: Nick Clooney, Diane Sawyer, and veteran journalist, Helen Thomas.
In George Clooney's, "Good Night, and Good Luck," -- Clooney not only co-wrote, produced, and directed the film, but he plays the role of (Fred Friendly) -- the producer of the top rated CBS news show of the 50s, "See It Now". The film is about Edward R. Murrow's on-air confrontations with Sen. Joseph McCarthy about his tactics in getting guilty pleas.
Section 8, a company created by Steven Soderbergh and Clooney, in 1999, was the primary producer and the Todd Wagner and Mark Cuban's 2929 Entertainment organization, was contracted to provide the cost for production and distribution.
"In regards to how Clooney's co-producers are to share revenue," says Troy Cory of NBS100, at a recent film development and pitch session in Munich, German, "I was asked by the head of the highly respected FFF motion picture financing group, if I knew anything about Clooney's technique of parlaying movies - for dollars."
"When I said yes, I held them with puzzled looks for a moment or two before I allowed myself to discuss the financial success Clooney was having in utilizing his own brand of parlaying movies in Hollywood." Troy said he touched on the problems of losing big bucks in movie making in Hollywood, and said to this reporter, that he, "actually used the Clooney quotes he had just read in the LATimes, about Clooney's 'annus horribilis', and his statements, "in all things considered, it's been the worst year of my life," and how "McCarthy exploited communism as the external enemy" - for profit."
It was just by coincidence and good luck that the question was asked and answered; "because at the time," says Troy, I was just ready to present the Nathan B. Stubblefield movie screenplay entitled, "Wireless and Watermelons." It is the true story about the reversal of another Kentuckian's success, who used his patents to parlay financing to market his 1908, "wireless telephone" invention." By the time he was 46, Nathan or "Nat" became an absolute recluse, waiting for the release of his wirleless telephone frequencies, exploited and seized by the government, in 1913."
In "Good Night, and Good Luck", the external enemy is communism, exploited by U.S. Senator, Joseph McCarthy, who is portrayed through archival film clips. In the 50s climate of fear, it was not unusual for journalists, actors, politicians, and producers to be caught into the stickey web created by McCarthy sympathizers, working in government.
To keep a controversial spokesperson quiet, "sympathizer" quite often, became a "secret keeper". Those who were accused of being traitors to their nation, also became suspects to their sponsors, and to the higher-ups in their companies. Most often than not, judicial activism prevailed and property rights were taken by regulatory seizures. Of course. when the word "sympathizer" was once pen on a person, it lasted a lifetime. "Murrow talks about 'a built-in allergy to stories that offend us,'" Clooney said. "The problem hasn't changed, really."
"Clooney's right" says Troy, "I can relate to a built-in allergy to stories that offend us. Can you imagine if the Edward Murrow television show was around before the Civil War between the North and South, what would have happened to the rebel rousers in Washington, D.C. in the 1860s. The external enemy for the average citizens living in the Southern States of the U.S., was the Union and Abraham Lincoln."
Anything controversial said by a once-upon-a time-friend of a former U.S. of America trade partner, action was immediatley taken, and property rights and assets belonging to the provocateur were taken by regulatory seizures. "It was no longer fun singing to the red, white and blue," relates Troy. Of course, when the word "southerner" or "confederate sympathizer" -- was once penned on a person in those days, "a built-in allergy to stories that offend people, stuck like glue, and to some extent, -- still does."
In the 1900s, the external enemy in the U.S. included: Spain, Western Union, Thomas Edison, Nikola Tesla, and Graham Bell. Joe McCarthy and Murrow would have had a hayday with this one. The exploiters of their territories and inventions, were not only the U.S. regulatory agencies, but also the Kentucky "Big Six", who discovered from Stubblefield, there was an easier and cheaper way to to communicate with each other, without the use of telephone poles and land lines.
The "Bix Six", were the prominent Murray, Kentucky investors in the N.B. Stubblefield, 1907, wireless telephone patent. The patent drawing depicts the dynamics of today's Internet and WiFi, system, that enables VOIP users to receive and send voice through the atmosphere, and over the internet, without wires. - MORE.
Today, in Hollywood, the external enemy of the film industry, are the trade unions and the ability of outside digital technology to project images on the big screen. The people taking advantage of this fear-factor, are the Internet users, the DVD manufacturer, banks and the FCC.
"For example," says Troy, "it was just announced this 39th week, the last weeks of Michael Eisner, heading Disney -- the the company created Kingdom Films to entice Credit Suisse First Boston to raise the financing for making films. The bank will provide 40% of production and distribution costs for about 32 films over the next four years, and will receive 40% of the film profits, including from box-office and video sales."
"The cost of movies is so great that sharing a little risk is not such a bad idea," said people close to the deal. The parlaying of movies for $$$$, guarantees Disney distribution fees and 60% of the profit. Disney last week said its film unit would have a fourth-quarter loss of as much as $300 million.
In today's climate of terror and fear of stiff taxes, judicial activism, hurricanes and inflation; -- Journalists and Celebrity actor/producers, like Clooney, are caught between trade unions, studios, banks and government regulators. Norman Lear, of the American way, believes that the fear of being accused or accusing each other of being traitors to their sponsors, and/or to the higher-ups in their companies or political party, who demand them to back off controversy can be stifling. "Murrow talks about 'a built-in allergy to stories that offend us,' " Clooney said. "The problem hasn't changed, really."
But it seems that after all is said and done in making so many films at Warner Bros., George plans to keep working with Soderbergh. "We're really good friends. We just were afraid of becoming administrators. All of a sudden we were businessmen. Not only are we not tremendously good at it, we really don't enjoy it. It's not fun."
"We feel like we're trying to pick the right spot to pull the plug and walk away."
And yet, the projects keep coming: "The Good German," a film directed by Soderbergh, stars Clooney as an American journalist who, while seeking his mistress in postwar Berlin, becomes entangled in a murder mystery; and "Michael Clayton," starring Clooney as a high-profile New York attorney in the last and worst days of his career. Both are scheduled for release next year.
Lessons from home
"My father has lived 68 years in Kentucky and has very little to do with Hollywood," Clooney said. "And suddenly he's a Hollywood hippie."
When Clooney talks about his father, it's clear he feels the long shadow of the ex-anchorman. His father's ideals set the standard for his own. "There were plenty of times he'd say, 'Don't come back and look me in the eye unless you did this ...' " Clooney said. Even now, "He's the dominant one in the room. He's funny and smart. If he were here, he would be telling stories and we'd be sitting there listening."
"Good Night, and Good Luck" is "ultimately a love letter to my old man," Clooney said. "It's me saying, 'Thanks for setting the bar that high, for believing so strongly in the responsibility of information,' and taking it to the level where it cost him a lot of things over the years. There were jobs he left because he wasn't willing to compromise."- More Lessons from home -- in the Life and Times of George Clooney
Parlaying Movies - for $$$$$
In a way, Clooney has been able to carry on that independent spirit developed by those in the film industry, that is creating updated ways to produce socially and politically relevant films -- that have faded since the '60s and '70s.
As the story goes, a tan, talkative and friendly Clooney, while sitting inside his dimly lighted cottage on the Warner Bros. studio lot in Burbank, explained the parlaying movie process this way to film and finance the 1954, Murrow vs McCarthy event.
"I'm in the enviable position of being able to force studios to make films that they wouldn't ordinarily make," he said. Besides citing "Good Night, and Good Luck," he mentioned his movie production, "Syriana," a political thriller set in the Persian Gulf, which he used to help persuade Warner Bros. to co-produce, by agreeing to take no upfront dollars as the principal actor in the movie.
Clooney plays a career CIA operative, based on real-life agent Robert Baer, who uncovers a disturbing truth about his life's work. The Warner Bros. / Section 8 co-production, will have a Nov. 23 limited release. The general release date is set for Dec. 9.
The Luck of Kentucky
But Clooney said he wants to leverage his fame and power as a box office commodity while he still can. "I want to say I did it when it wasn't very easy. If it costs you a career, credibility and all those things, that means you did it on your own volition and you have to live with that. I'm okay with that. I'd rather be able to point back and say, 'At this exact moment in history when it was kind of tricky to do this, these are the stories I told.' "
"No one else could have gotten this film made," said Andy Friendly, Fred Friendly's son and a longtime television producer, executive and consultant. "He could easily sit at home and collect his $25-million paychecks for making big commercial movies, enjoy his home in Italy and hang out."
Anyway - if Joseph McCarthy was still around to comment on the replay of his appearance on Murrow's, "See It Now"" in the Cloony movie, -- it would be more likely than not, that McCarhy would express the feeling that maybe somewhere along the line his good luck ran a little too far to the right lane, and the Venona Cables, on which he relied on, were hidden at the bottom of somebody's desk drawer.
"Good Night, and Good Luck" started shooting after Clooney, who had gained 35 pounds for the role, was injured during some fight scenes. Mysterious and excruciating headaches turned out to have been the result of a spinal leak, which requires in-hospital treatment every two weeks.
"We'd already written the script, hired all the people. I knew there was no way I could not do it. It's one of those things that forces you to go," he said. "It's actually good for you. People think you should stay in bed and get well. Had I not had all this work to do, I would have sat around and felt sorry for myself."
Unlike Glooney, McCarthy after being censured by the Senate with no future in sight, returned to his old routine of heavy drinking, that he readily admitted, was one of the things that had helped him develop amicable relationships with many members of the press. Some say, that alcohol mixed with morphine -- did him in.
Just four years older than Clooney, McCarthy, born in a small, close-knit Irish farming community in Grand Chute, Wisconsin, on November 14, 1909, died of acute hepatitis in Bethesda Naval Hospital on May 2, 1957, at the age of 48. He was given a state funeral attended by 70 senators, followed by a mass held at St. Matthew's Cathedral. The Solemn Pontifical Requiem was performed before over a hundred priests and 2000 others. He was buried in St. Mary's Cemetery, Appleton, Wisconsin. He was survived by his wife, Jean and their adopted daughter, Tierney McCarthy.


ByLines: Tidbits
People in the media industry,
During the intense anti-Communist movement that existed in America from 1950, people who were suspected of varying degrees of Communist links, became the subject of aggressive inquiries, which became known as "witch hunts" to his opponents. People in the motion picture industry, government, and the military were accused by McCarthy of being suspected Soviet spies or Communist sympathizers.
Venona Cables
Although McCarthy's activities did not directly result in any convictions or criminal prosecutions for espionage, the now declassified Venona Cables from the former Soviet Union indicate that a number of the individuals he pursued were actually guilty.
One of the most prominent attacks on McCarthy's methods came in an episode of the TV documentary series "See It Now", by respected journalist Edward R. Murrow, which was broadcast on March 9, 1954. The show consisted mostly of clips of McCarthy speaking, so any negative reaction would be mostly from McCarthy hanging himself, as it were. In the clips McCarthy does such things as accusing the Democratic party of "twenty years of treason" (1933-1953, in his estimation), and berating witnesses including an Army general.
The Murrow report sparked a nationwide popular opinion backlash against McCarthy, which the Senator tried to counter by appearing on the show himself. McCarthy appeared on "See It Now", about three weeks after the original episode, where he made a number of personal attacks and charges against Murrow. However, his method of delivery had been designed for a live audience, not a nationwide broadcast one; the result of this appearance was a further decline in his popularity. President Eisenhower, now free of McCarthy's political intimdation and the always potential threat of American Catholic electoral displeasure, referred to "McCarthywasm" to a reporter.
The term "McCarthyism" has since become synonymous with any government activity which seeks to suppress unfavorable political or social views, often by limiting or suspending civil rights under the pretext of maintaining national security.

More on GeorgeClooney Byline Story

Mike Clooney's personal views through his columns:
• The environment: "All those conservationists and environmentalists and tree huggers were right. The regulations they have called for and nagged about for a couple of generations are working. Our countryside is coming back to life." -- Jan. 9, 1995. Click for More About Nick Clooney Runs For Congress

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Photo665: George Clooney. TVInews 107 George Clooney Takes Lessons from his Dad, Nick Clooney of Kentucky, in completing Edward R. Murrow's, "Good Night, and Good Luck," - by Parlaying Movies - for Dollars • / Television International Magazine's Person Of The Week POW 392005 - / NEWS Convergence - 39th Week of 2005 / Feature Story • 07GeorgeClooneyLuck.htm Smart90, s90tv, lookradio, wifi90, tvimagazine, dv90, vratv, xingtv, Ddiaries, nbs100, Look Radio, Troy Cory-Stubblefield, Josie Cory - Television With No Borders

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