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cushioncrawler
05-22-2012, 06:56 AM
I think the creationists would rather just forget about Expelled
Category: Creationism
Posted on: June 25, 2011 10:26 PM, by PZ Myers

As I've already mentioned, the makers of the Expelled movie have gone bankrupt, and the movie itself is on the auction block…and a few people on the side of goodness, light, and knowledge are making a bid to buy it. There's some reasonable interest there: the Expelled crew did a lot of interviews, and only a small portion of them actually made it to the screen. Personally, I can tell you that they spent about three hours with me one afternoon, and maybe a minute of that total made it to the movie. I was actually surprised that that one bit was all that made the cut, and even it was absurdly innocuous — it made me suspect I'd been doing my teddy bear imitation that afternoon again.

Anyway, it's a reasonable interest to get all the other stuff that was left on the cutting room floor, as the Panda's Thumb bidders have already explained:

The auction promises that besides all available rights and interests in the finished film itself (there is an existing distribution contract), the winner will get all the production materials and rights to them. Want to know what was in the rest of the interviews with Richard Dawkins and PZ Myers? I know I would like to have that material archived and made available to the public, among other things that Premise Media found inconvenient to include in their film.

Alas, one of the writers for the movie, Kevin Miller, is having a hissy fit over this right now. It's pathetically amusing. He's now comparing his dishonest failure of a movie to The God Delusion, which he claims was also a forgotten flop, just like Expelled.

That said, it does strike me as rather odd to see all of you obsessing over gaining access to this film. If Expelled truly is an inconsequential piece of horseshit, I fail to see why it's so important to gain access to the archives. I can't imagine how pathetically you would view Christians who set about to do the same if they had the chance to get their hands on the original drafts, notes, etc. behind Richard Dawkins' "The God Delusion," for instance. The book was a full frontal attack on religion. But it's arguments were so easily defeated that its relevance (and perceived threat to theism) quickly faded from view. I defy you to find a group of theists hunkered down in a shady corner of the internet talking about it right now. And I can hardly conceive of a group of Christians gleefully plotting to gain control of the rights so they could publish their own annotated version of the book. And if they did, I can hear you people mocking them mercilessly. And it would be well deserved, b/c it would be a pathetic form of behavior fear-based behavior. It would also be extremely telling in terms of the perceived threat "The God Delusion" represented. The fact that you're still hunkered down over here chortling about "Expelled" three years later, full of vitriol and immediately defensive at the slightest criticism of your behavior is the most telling of all. Just an observation.
A full set of drafts and notes for The God Delusion would be a fascinating bit of scholarly minutia! It's fairly common for well-known scholars to leave their notes and works to a library, because many people will be interested in how the ideas formed. And I think a collection of unused footage of Dawkins would have some interest; he's also made public unused footage from his documentary "Root of All Evil?" in the past, to good reception. He's not afraid to reveal the full content of his interviews.

It's extremely silly to claim that The God Delusion has lost its relevance and faded from view. It's sold over two million copies, and was on the New York Times bestseller list for almost a year. I'll note, too, that Richard Dawkins isn't the one gone bankrupt and left with a dud property on his hands that he's trying to sell off to appease his creditors. And yes, Christians obsessed and are still obsessing over it. Look up "Dawkins' fleas": he practically sparked a whole industry of Christian apologists writing desperate rebuttals of the book. The Dawkins Delusion, Beyond the God Delusion, The Dawkins Letters, The God Delusion Revisited, Deluded by Dawkins, The God Solution, A Catholic Replies to Professor Dawkins, Darwin's Angel, The Argument Against Richard Dawkins' The God Delusion, The New Atheist Crusaders, The Truth Behind the New Atheism, The New Atheists: The Twilight of Reason and the War on Religion, God is no Delusion, Challenging Richard Dawkins, Mysterious Reality: God, the World and Ourselves in the Light of Richard Dawkins' The God Delusion, God and the New Atheism…you get the idea. I guarantee you, there are theists hunkered down right now kvetching about it.

We're chortling over Expelled now, but for a different reason. It was a flop. It's backers lost money and their reputation over it. It's writer was exposed as an incompetent hack. The content of the movie was revealed to be a dishonest hash of mangled interviews. Their PR was a disaster from day one. And now my side is considering seizing it as a trophy. We're chortling because it was a triumph for our side. I can understand why poor Kevin Miller might feel disgruntled about evolutionists cheering over the tattered corpse of his beloved baby…just as I can understand how Napoleon might have been a bit disgruntled about Waterloo, and found the British revelry entirely unsettling and annoying.

Too bad, Kevin. You lost.