September 29, 2005

Delay Prosecutor Is Making a Movie

Byron York of the National Review has broken a fairly important story with respect to the Delay indictment. Evidently, the prosecutor, Ronnie Earle, has allowed a film crew unusual access to the Delay investigation so that they can make a movie about Earle's investigation:


For the last two years, as he pursued the investigation that led to Wednesday's indictment of House Majority Leader Tom DeLay, Travis County, Texas prosecutor Ronnie Earle has given a film crew "extraordinary access" to make a motion picture about his work on the case.

The resulting film is called The Big Buy, made by Texas filmmakers Mark Birnbaum and Jim Schermbeck. "Raymond Chandler meets Willie Nelson on the corner of Wall Street and Pennsylvania Avenue in The Big Buy, a Texas noir political detective story that chronicles what some are calling a 'bloodless coup with corporate cash,'" reads a description of the picture on Birnbaum's website, markbirnbaum.com. The film, according to the description, "follows maverick Austin DA Ronnie Earle's investigation into what really happened when corporate money joined forces with relentless political ambitions to help swing the pivotal 2002 Texas elections, cementing Republican control from Austin to Washington DC.""We approached him [Earle], and he offered us extraordinary access to him and, to an extent, to his staff," Birnbaum told National Review Online Thursday. "We've been shooting for about two years."....

Earle "allowed us behind the scenes when the indictments came down last year, the first wave of indictments," Schermbeck says. "We got to follow him back to his home a couple of times, which I understand he doesn't allow anybody to do." Schermbeck says the film includes interviews with some critics of Earle, as well as lawyers who are representing some of the targets of the investigation.

So far, The Big Buy has received almost no attention in the press. With DeLay's indictment, and increased attention to Earle as well, that situation seems likely to change. (The filmmakers say they will be back at work next week, filming a new ending to the picture.) "We're pretty low on everybody's radar," Schermbeck says. "We kind of took a gamble three years ago. We didn't know what was going to happen. We feel like, as documentary filmmakers, we gambled and it paid off."

Wow. As I mentioned in my previous post, I have no clue whether there is any substance to this investigation or not. However, this move by Earle does not suggest that Earle is pursuing this investigation for the most noble of reasons. If anything, it will lend credence to the Republican claims that Earle is an overzealous prosecutor with an agenda.
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