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Sony Hosted Obama Fundraiser, Releasing Bin Laden Movie Before Election

5:23 PM, Aug 10, 2011 • By MICHAEL WARREN
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There may be an overtly political reason that moviegoers will be seeing the story of the Osama bin Laden raid just before they vote for president. Sony Pictures, the company distributing next year's film, hosted a fundraiser for Barack Obama on their studio's premises in California last April. So far, Sony is the only major studio to hold a political fundraiser this cycle. According to Deadline Hollywood, Sony will release the bin Laden movie, directed by Academy Award-winning director Kathryn Bigelow, on October 12, 2012--less than a month before the presidential election.

Sony Pictures

"The eyebrow does go up when you see the release date," says Douglas Urbanski, a Hollywood producer and conservative radio talk show host. Urbanski said he believes Bigelow's movie will be straightforward and apolitical, much like her 2009 war film The Hurt Locker (which won the Academy Award for Best Picture). But Sony's decision to release the bin Laden movie just weeks before the election, he says, is most likely "very, very deliberate."

Urbanski was a producer for The Contender, a 2000 political thriller with a plot that sympathized with a sex scandal-plagued Democrat and demonized a conservative Republican member of Congress. The movie was released on October 13, 2000. "It was without a doubt a deliberate attempt to influence the election," says Urbanski.

Sony Pictures could not immediately be reached for comment.

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