Bill Maher Gunning for An Oscar August 20, 2008

Bill Maher Gunning for An Oscar

It looks like Bill Maher wants his movie Religulous to win an Oscar for Best Documentary.

What leads us to this conclusion?

We know that “Religulous” is seriously in the derby for several reasons. First, Lionsgate hired veteran Oscars PR reps to handle its ballyhoo (Michele Robertson in L.A., Jeff Hill in New York). Secondly, the studio is giving the documentary its theatrical runs in L.A. and New York to qualify it for academy consideration, as Jeff Sneider notes at Anne Thompson‘s blog at Thirdly, the hallelujahs that film critics gave it today at the screening. More disciples are sure to follow.

Reporter Tom O’Neil doesn’t stop there.

He thinks Religulous has a fighting chance at winning the Academy Award:

Thus Oscar voters will be forced to pay attention to “Religulous” and, assuming it gets enough good reviews — which I think it will — it will be taken seriously by them as a film. So far it’s not a strong year for documentaries, so, barring divine intervention, I think it’s in the derby.

Imagine all the petty things that already irk the Religious Right.

Now, imagine how entertaining it would be for this documentary to edge out its competitors…

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  • lo-rez

    Honestly I hope it’s not even nominated. I wouldn’t want to give media outlets an excuse to say Ben Stein’s name three times and resurrect his persecution complex.

  • Further to lo-rez’s point, Hollywood is already politically polarizing, and the RR will take advantage of a nomination here to demonstrate what a bunch of godless liberals are out there, making fun of honest, average Christian Americans. And point out how Expelled, which they will say was every bit as good (or bad) got snubbed in favor of its anti-religious counterpart. Remember, it doesn’t have to be true, it only has to spin for a little while.

  • Ben

    Now, imagine how entertaining it would be for this documentary to edge out its competitors…

    Edge it out? To edge out “Expelled” it would still have to really suck! I think the word we’re looking for here is “trounce” (or “clobber”, “thrash”, “crush”, “dominate”, “rout”, “wallop” – take your pick)

  • Is anyone else going to avoid seeing this movie because Bill Maher used the same deceitful methods of getting interviews as the Expelled people did?

  • Cindy

    Can I put in a grammar note? Is it pronounced Religulous or Relijulous? Because if he wants it pronounced with a /j/ he should spell it Religiulous. And that’s my minor pet peeve of the day…….

  • I haven’t heard much about this…is it out already?

  • Sean

    I can’t wait for this film to come out, i don’t care how the interviews were setup. Freethinking needs some advertising. I hope it pisses off every religious person on the planet. It’s all about attempting to show just how ridiculous the religious paradigm really is and emphasizing that not everyone is a sheep.

  • Go Bill Maher. I will see this documentary.

  • Larry Huffman

    I am at a loss to understand how a nomination would be bad. I am personally private, outside of these forums, about my atheism…but I most certainly want our views on logic, reason and religion to be as loudly forwarded as possible.

    Who cares what the religious right will do with it? Who cares if they just attack the hollywood left. I could care less about the RR…they are not the targets of this…the target audience is the majority of americans who, even though religious, do not consider themselves part of the extreme right. People who rather enjoy hollywood’s products and ignore the rhetoric from the extremists. The ones who might pay attention and learn something…and possibly be given mental or emotional permission with this to examine their own beliefs.

    Again…I am at a loss as to how popularity of this movie could be bad for atheists. I think the arguements provided do not come close to support the view at all.

    As a final note…if you are worried about the religious right’s reaction to anything…then our viewpoints will NEVER be shared. As with progress, social evolution and discovery…I view everything in a ‘despite the religious right’ manner.

  • J Myers

    Is anyone else going to avoid seeing this movie because Bill Maher used the same deceitful methods of getting interviews as the Expelled people did?

    No, because this is nonsense. When one is dealing with a topic that is inherently dishonest, where people will lie about everything and anything in “service” of their faith, such deception is not only justified, it’s necessary. The only reservation I’d have is if the editing somehow misrepresents anyone’s position, but given the absurdity of what these people claim to believe in the first place, it would take some really creative editing to accomplish that.

    This isn’t in any way analogous to Expelled, where the producers were deliberately trying to misrepresent people who would have been more than happy to give their forthright opinions on any topic put to them. In fact, this situation is quite the opposite. Equating the actions of the Religulous people with those of the Expelled people is simply absurd.

  • Gabriel

    I am looking forward to the movie. I can’t think of any movies that potray atheism in a positive light but I can think of many movies that are very pro religion. I hope to see more movies that are pro atheist. If there are more such movies I hope to find them on DVD.

  • Axegrrl

    For anyone who didn’t catch Maher on Larry King the other night (he was great:), here you go:

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