Over the last weekend HBO aired Game Change, the controversial movie based on the equally controversial book of the same title. On Sunday, March 11, REELZ brang The Undefeated to TV. An encore airs tonight at 2200 / 10 PM EDT and March 25 at 1730 / 5:30 PM EDT. Unlike Game Change, The Undefeated tells the true story about Sarah Palin’s accomplishments as Governor of Alaska, how she brought reform to her state and how her enemies tried to destroy her.
Tucker S.Q.: Game Change “Truthish like National Enquirer”
LaDonna Hale Curzon, Executive Producer and Host of Sarah Palin Radio interviewed Fred Davis, who was the chief creative and media consultant to the McCain-Palin campaign. Davis was portrayed in a key role in the movie.
Davis is well-renowned for his attention-grabbing GOP ads. About the movie and what he called his “bit part,” he said it was “interesting.” Davis is friends with the people who made the movie and with the two men who wrote the book on which the movie was very loosely based. Davis said the movie was “an interpretation of history, and S.Q. said “it was ‘truthish.’ It reminded me of National Enquirer.”
“There’s certainly truth in most of the things you saw, but was it an exact interpretation of history? Far from it,” Davis said. Curzon said that the movie raises questions about who gets to write history, but Davis said, “it was entertainment. HBO sells entertainment. It’s not the History Channel.”
“Were there any scenes in the movie that you might have had a problem with.” Curzon asked. “There were millions, LaDonna…again, it’s back to entertainment. Those guys – they started with a book – but [the book] was about every campaign in 2008. [The book] was brilliantly researched. I was a source for it, so I know how they did it. They’re crafty little lads and they checked every word and made sure they got it right.”
Film Makers Used Gov. Palin for Entertainment Appeal, Sales
Davis said the film makers had to take the book which on average would require four to five days to read and render it as a two-hour movie. “They looked at all the campaigns and decided that the most interesting, colorful, entertaining and sales-worthy character was Sarah Palin.” Out of the 900 pages in the book, the movie makers took the 100 pages that involved Gov. Palin and featured it in the movie.
Davis said people connected with the movie did contact him prior to its production. But, Davis noted many errors in details. When the movie opens, he said it set in a “small, crummy conference room” in a “not so attractive office.” The actual meeting was held in a beautiful boardroom at either the Ritz Carlton or the Four Seasons in Phoenix, AZ. The movie was filled with “that’s not right, that’s not right, and that’s not right moments.”
Gov. Palin Presented as Wild Caricature
Davis said “some of the story about Sarah was accurate and some of it is what I would call wild caricature.” Though Davis had limited access to Gov. Palin, he recalled her gubernatorial campaign which she ran “on a shoestring” budget of $50,000. He produced some of her ads. His package proposal at $200,000 was four times Gov. Palin’s entire campaign budget. Davis noted that the movie got several facts wrong about the selection of Gov. Palin as McCain’s VP nominee.
Davis said the morning before her acceptance speech at the convention, Gov. Palin was having her hair worked on by two women, literally doing a complete beehive up-do on side- and a hair down style on the other so she could pick between the styles. Davis suggested the up-do and it ultimately became the iconic Sarah Palin style. But, Davis said the movie depicted her as giddy walking among racks of dresses. He was the second insider to say that she was serious, not giddy.
Curzon asked Davis “why do you think the public is still so enthralled with her?”
“You have the front-runner Mitt Romney, who will likely be the Republican nominee. And every story you read says he can’t close the sale. I think people are looking for new and different. Rick Santorum appears to be new and different. Newt Gingrich, not so much so, but he presented a ‘new and different new’ and people liked that for a while. Herman Cain for a while was outsider grey. Rick Perry for a while was outsider grey. And I think Sarah Palin was always the ultimate outsider….I think people are striving for the different – desperate – considering the state of the economy and the world.”
Gov. Palin Captures Real Hope
Davis said for several weeks, Gov. Palin “was the biggest celebrity in the world….and she is still a major celebrity…she captured real hope versus Obama’s selling of hope that didn’t really arrive.”
Curzon asked Davis if he had seen The Undefeated. Davis had not seen it. As Curzon did her broadcast, her family was watching The Undefeated on a lower floor. She said it was fascinating that there are two movies battling it out on the same weekend about Gov. Palin’s story.
This interview marked the fourth and final installment in Curzon’s “Game Change, Game On” series.
Curzon is the Executive Producer and Host of Sarah Palin Radio. Since Sarah Palin Radio was launched in 2008, the program has been covered on MSNBC, CNN, WUSA, “America’s Morning News,” Agence France-Presse TV, SVT Sweden TV, PJTV, United Press International,The Washington Times, The Washington Post, The New York Times, The New Yorker magazine and numerous blogs and radio shows. The executive producer and host was named “Worse Person in the World” by Keith Olbermann on his MSNBC show and acknowledged by Gov. Palin in her best-selling book Going Rogue.
Audio Transcript of Fred Davis Interview