Clearly, Morgan Spurlock has the “Michael Moore chromosome” — the part of the human genome that actively embraces controversy, especially if it helps sell a movie.
Early last week, as Moore’s doc “Fahrenheit 9/11” was winning the Palme d’Or, Spurlock and his doc were getting the back of MTV’s hand, or so he claims.
On May 24, Spurlock says the web declined to air a spot for “Super Size Me” a doc that follows Spurlock through a 30-day dietetic McDonald’s bender worthy of Ben Sanderson in “Leaving Las Vegas” (“What you don’t understand is … you can never, never ask me to stop eating Quarter Pounders with cheese.“)
By the next day, IDP decided to spend its money on other nets, and on May 26 issued a press release saying MTV wouldn’t air a commercial for the movie, which disparages fast-food companies.
Reuters and several national newspapers picked up the story, but MTV said a junior staffer without sufficient authority made the initial call but was then overruled by her boss before the story broke.
Spurlock thinks otherwise:
“I think the press release got them to change their mind,” he says, adding: “MTV relies very heavily on companies that market to their core demographics. McDonald’s is one of those companies.”
Whatever the case, “IDP says it’s taking MTV up on its new offer, going after the hungry eyeballs watching “Punk’d.” And it may place more ads on other MTV shows, provided the doc’s expansion to 197 screens on May 30 goes well.