On The Real (Old) World

For it's US release (no doubt on a Fox network), they should call it The Real World: Copenhagen, or maybe The Anti-War Room. The actual title of 32-year-old director Christoffer Guldbrandsen's documentary depends on the language--it's "Fogh Behind the Facade," in Danish and "The Road to Europe" otherwise--and it follows the Danish president, Anders Fogh Rasmussen through his rotation as president of the European Union. It shows what happens when EU dimplomats stop being polite and start getting real.

Fogh and Guldbrandsen, image: drsales.dkBefore this Fogh was pronounced faux, but now, it should probably have that yiddishy hard-consonant ending that art history poseurs give to "Van Gogh." (As in "Lars, dude, we are so Fogh'ed.") The fly-on-the-wall crew, traveling with Fogh's approval, captured embarassing comments from other EU heads (like Chirac, Putin, Germany's Joschka Fischer) which have set off political storms all over.

It's interesting to note, and I'll take credit for noting it, thank you, that just as with Bush/Rove's Sforzian backgrounds, the "official" media coverage proves more revealing than the independent press.

Asked by Le Monde what he discovered during filming, Guldbrandsen replied, "Avec les hommes politiques, je pense que l'on n'obtient jamais la vÈritÈ quand on la demande." Translation for "freedom" fighters: "With politicians, I think you never get the truth when you ask for it."

Coverage: here's a BBC article; a better Deutsche Welle article; Guldbransen's three questions in Le Monde, a piece at the end of today's On the Media, and the film's official page [in Danish] and rights sales info [in English] at DK1, the Danish public broadcaster.

Since 2001 here at greg.org, I've been blogging about the creative process—my own and those of people who interest me. That mostly involves filmmaking, art, writing, research, and the making thereof.

Many thanks to the Creative Capital | Warhol Foundation Arts Writers Program for supporting greg.org that time.

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first published: June 1, 2003.

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