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Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Washington (AFP) – An Oscar-winning filmmaker has dropped plans to make a documentary about Hillary Clinton, following protests by Republican rivals, and a planned TV miniseries about her has also been scrapped.

Charles Ferguson, who was making his film for CNN, faced criticism from Republicans that it would promote the former U.S. secretary of state’s expected 2016 presidential run, while Democrats appeared reluctant to speak to him.

“When I approached people for interviews, I discovered that nobody, and I mean nobody, was interested in helping me make this film,” he wrote.

“After approaching well over a hundred people, only two persons who had ever dealt with Mrs. Clinton would agree to an on-camera interview, and I suspected that even they would back out.”

Ferguson, who won an Oscar for “Inside Job,” his 2010 documentary about the financial crisis, said he began with the idea of making an “ambitious, controversial, and highly visible” film which was independent and fair on the former secretary of state, senator and first lady.

But Clinton was not cooperating and some Democrats were concerned about it as a commercial venture, Ferguson said. Republicans claimed the film would promote Clinton, who is considering a 2016 White House run.

“Neither political party wanted the film made,” Ferguson said.

“After painful reflection, I decided that I couldn’t make a film of which I would be proud. And so I’m cancelling. (Not because of any pressure from CNN — quite the contrary.)

“It’s a victory for the Clintons, and for the money machines that both political parties have now become. But I don’t think that it’s a victory for the media, or for the American people,” added the filmmaker, who was also nominated for an Oscar for his Iraq War documentary “No End In Sight.”

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