Editor and publisher Andrew Breitbart was a major force behind the battle conservatives waged to be heard in the midst of a powerful media that ignored them or twisted their message for years, filmmaker Andrew Marcus says.
"Andrew Breitbart personified the fight,'' Marcus, director of the new documentary "Hating Breitbart'' told Newsmax TV in an exclusive interview.
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"When the Tea Party protest movement started I discovered . . . people outraged at the size of their government and government spending — and the media portrayed that movement as racist and potentially violent.''
He said Breitbart, a former editor of the Drudge Report who went on to start his own news service, attended those Tea Party events and soon found himself on the front lines when he helped publicize the so-called "Acorn videos.''
Those videos were shot in 2009 by conservative activists Hannah Giles and James O'Keefe, who went into the offices of the Association of Community Organizations for Reform Now posing as a pimp and a hooker.
There, they were allegedly advised on how to hide the prostitution business and avoid paying taxes.
"Breitbart distributed those videos across the world and ended up taking ACORN down and he was viciously attacked as racist, as deceptive, and it was by the same machine that was attacking the Tea Party,'' Marcus said.
"It's a machine of hatred, of vilification. The way I describe it is the progressive movement, the institutional left has weaponized these news groups to assassinate character of anybody who doesn't toe the progressive line.''
Breitbart, who was married to Susannah Bean, daughter of comic Orson Bean, and had four children, died of heart failure at the age of 43 last year. But he leaves a living legacy of conservative advocacy.
"He was an incredibly personable guy, so much so that the people who were his detractors, who took the time to actually get to know him, they would all say, 'Oh my God I was totally surprised, I actually ended up liking this guy!'" Marcus said.
"Breitbart was a model for how to stand up and fight back.''
He said while the mainstream media still has great power, there have been two major changes in communications.
"One, everybody's got a camera now so the major networks and the local affiliates are not the only people with cameras who can capture the narrative,'' he explained.
"The other is the Internet, distribution. Both of these walls, acquisition and distribution, have come tumbling down.''
"Hating Breitbart'' is now in theaters, and available on iTunes, Amazon, and Netflix.
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