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September 26, 2017
WUSF 89.7 News
WUSF 89.7 News
Florida's 2000 Election Is Documentary Fodder
(2004-04-23)
(WUSF) - Known for their political satire and animated cartoons, South Florida business associates Jeannine Ross and Bruce Yarock had never produced a full-length documentary.

But, that was before Florida's controversial 2000 presidential election.

ROSS: After the Supreme Court decision, we felt very outraged about what happened.

So, the duo started taping South Florida election protests. The footage grew and was eventually molded into their first documentary titled: Florida Fights Back: Resisting The Stolen Election .

There's no narrator. Instead, protestors and extensive interviews guide the viewer through the chronological tale.

YAROCK: We felt that it moved along pretty quickly and we didn't want to do it in the same style as Unprecedented. And, we felt that between the footage and the substantial interviews we did with Vince Bugliosi and Greg Palast that we felt that it moved along pretty well that way.

They also wanted to distinguish their documentary from the better known film - Unprecedented: The 2000 Presidential Election - currently playing on the Sundance Cable Channel.

ROSS: Our film has some of the same information as Unprecedented. But, it really tells a different side of the story, which is the public outrage about what happened after the election. The demand for a federal investigation and how the Democratic Party really dropped the ball.

Her partner, Yarock, says their film is more grass roots, shot in an MTV-style and includes unanswered questions from the 2000 election debacle.

YAROCK: One of the main issues for right here in Florida was the several thousand people who were deliberately targeted and purged from the voters list. That whole felons list which is kind of engineered by Bush, by Jeb Bush, and that's really never gotten much media attention.

Although Al Gore may have conceded the 2000 election, the filmmakers say many Floridians still have not. Their documentary shows protestors challenging Democratic leaders to do something.

DOCUMENTARY: Is the Democratic Party doing anything about the election being stolen? What's the DEC doing? What would you have us do? I would have you ask for an investigation. Why is nobody doing anything is what I want to know.

They shot the entire work on mini-DV and financed the film themselves at a cost of about $30,000. It's one of 15 films up for best documentary at the Tambay Film Festival. While they're excited about the recognition, Ross says they did not make the documentary looking for revenge or rewards only justice.

ROSS: It's not too late to find justice against Katherine Harris, Jeb Bush and people who may have done things that were illegal. I don't think it's too late. And I think that if you do an investigation, okay Bush has been president all these years, you can't take that back. But, we can make people feel more secure about their vote in the future.

The film festival opens tonight and runs through Sunday at Tampa's Channelside Theaters.
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