'The Killing of Tony Blair': George Galloway in bid to raise funds for film about former PM
The film project is, Galloway hopes, the first step in a campaign to get Blair tried for war crimes in an international court
Sunday 11 August 2013
The outspoken politician George Galloway will turn his hand to film making following an announcement that he intends to produce a feature-length documentary entitled The Killing of Tony Blair.
The Respect MP for Bradford West is appealing to the public to help finance the project through the crowd-funding website Kickstarter.
The film project is, Galloway hopes, the first step in a campaign to get Blair, the former Labour Prime Minister, tried for war crimes in an international court.
The 58-year-old has acknowledged that the film's title was chosen for "shock value", but in response to claims it is in bad taste he said that Blair's was a "shocking story".
The title, Galloway said, refers to three types of "killing" which he pins on Blair's shoulders.
He will use the film to argue that Blair "killed" the Labour party with his modernising efforts; his decision to go to war in Iraq led to the deaths of "hundreds of thousands" of civilians; and that since stepping down from office the former leader has made a "financial killing".
Galloway says he has taken inspiration from Michael Moore, the left-wing American film maker whose feature Fahrenheit 9/11 attacked President George W Bush's reaction to the September 11 attacks and his war on terror.
He says he intends to replicate Moore's technique of ambushing unwilling interviewees by confronting Blair and other prominent New Labour figures.
This week Galloway and Greg Ward, the film's co-director, will launch an online fundraising initiative to get members of the public to contribute towards the costs of producing the feature.
Crowd-funding is an increasingly popular way for indviduals and organisations to get funding for particular projects.
Unlike investing money and receiving a share of the profits, backers who give money through crowd-funding websites like Kickstarter are given a reward in line with their contribution.
Everyone who gives £5 will see their name in the film's credits. Those who donate £2,000 will be treated to a "working VIP lunch" with the MP. The team aim to raise £50,000 for the Blair film, which he claims will make up a third of the final budget.
Galloway has caused controversy throughout his career. In 2003 he was expelled from the Labour Party following his criticism of Blair and the Iraq War.
He was also accused by the party of inciting voters in one constituency to reject Labour MPs and encouraging Arab armies to fight British troops, an allegation he denies.
He has also drawn criticism in the past for presenting a weekly talk show on Press TV, a channel backed by the Iranian state and banned from broadcasting in the UK by Ofcom.
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