The director of CNN's planned Hillary Clinton documentary—the one that rankled Republicans in August—has abandoned the project since no one he talked to seemed terribly enthusiastic about seeing the movie made.
As he explains in a Huffington Post blog post, Charles Ferguson describes the hostility he received from both Republicans and people within the Clinton circle. He ultimately concluded that because he would never get the access he needed, he wouldn't be able to pull off a film he'd be "proud" of. "Not Democrats, not Republicans — and certainly nobody who works with the Clintons, wants access to the Clintons, or dreams of a position in a Hillary Clinton administration," he wrote. "Not even journalists who want access, which can easily be taken away." A CNN Worldwide spokesperson told Politico that while CNN Films "understand[s] and respect[s] his decision," the company "won't seek other partners and are not proceeding with the film."
Ferguson's doc was announced in July by CNN and seemed to come alongside a wave of Clinton-related projects, including an NBC miniseries starring Diane Lane. By last month, though, the Republican National Committee had decided to not let either CNN or NBC air any debates during the Republican primary debates, arguing that the Clinton films demonstrated favoritism. What's evident, however, in Ferguson's post is that the Clintons were about as opposed to the projects as the Republicans. "It's a victory for the Clintons, and for the money machines that both political parties have now become," Ferguson explained. "But I don't think that it's a victory for the media, or for the American people." Ferguson noted that CNN did not pressure him to cancel the film.
It looks like this is likely just the first Clinton project to be scrapped. NBC's miniseries is now lingering in development purgatory amidst reports that the network's plan is to hope everyone forgets the whole thing before they quietly cancel the show.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.