Activists plan to make ‘Day’ eye of the storm

Orgs to hand out literature about global warming, radical leftists

Moviegoers exiting “The Day After Tomorrow” next weekend are likely to be accosted by an activist of one sort or another.

Seeking to score political points in the debate over global warming, several groups will be leafleting theaters.

MoveOn.org has the most ambitious handbill plan, having signed up 8,000 people to leaflet shows over Memorial Day weekend. Global Exchange and the Rainforest Action Network are banding together to hand out postcards — which show a gas-guzzling SUV buried in the snowed-in landscape from the “Day” one-sheet — at 110 theaters in 80 cities. U.S. PIRG is also conducting its own effort.

And, as a small potential boon for 20th Century Fox, which produced the $125 million spectacle pic, all three groups are encouraging their volunteers to see the movie before they hand out literature.

“There are going to be about 8,000 MoveOn members who are going to see ‘Day After Tomorrow’ and after their screening will be passing out a flyer to moviegoers about what is fiction and what is fact in the movie,” organizer Noah T. Winer said.

MoveOn is also hosting a “town hall” meeting tonight in Gotham, a few blocks from the pic’s preem. Former Vice President Al Gore will headline the program. Also on board are Laurie David, Al Franken and Robert Kennedy Jr. In addition, celebs Moby, Tim Robbins, Kevin Bacon and Kyra Sedgwick will attend.

MoveOn’s flyer, depicting a woman fleeing a tornado, is headlined “Global Warming Isn’t Just a Movie. It’s Your Future.” The text encourages people to sign petitions that blame the Bush administration for blocking legislation that would limit greenhouse gas emissions.

Jason Mark of the Global Exchange said that org is encouraging volunteers to go see the movie and then hand out to literature to the aud as they exit the auditorium.

“We’re asking everyone to adopt one screen,” Mark said. Anticipating that some exhibs might give leafletters the boot, he said they’re advising volunteers, “If theater management asks you to leave, you should comply politely and promptly.”

Group has printed up 20,000 flyers and sent them out to volunteers. It criticizes automaker Ford for producing polluting vehicles.

Not to be outdone, RightMarch.com, which styles itself as MoveOn’s conservative counterpart, has created its own flyer for volunteers to pass out.

It reads, in part, “Don’t let radical left-wing environmentalists fool you. … Act NOW — Because the day after tomorrow, radical leftists may have wrecked America’s economy.”

RightMarch’s William Green didn’t know how many people would be passing the flyer out, but said, “When we ask our members to do something, they’re pretty good about doing it.”