Stephen M. Silverman
June 02, 2004 08:00 AM

Michael Moore’s prize-winning anti-Bush documentary Fahrenheit 9/11 will hit U.S. screens on June 25 after its producers, Miramax honchos Bob and Harvey Weinstein, struck a theatrical distribution deal with Lions Gate Entertainment Corp. and IFC Films, reports Reuters.

Fahrenheit 9/11 won the coveted Palme d’Or, the top prize at last month’s Cannes Film Festival, and prompted PEOPLE film critic Leah Rozen to write of Moore’s “scathing attack” on President George W. Bush and the Iraq war: “Is his documentary art or agitprop? Both – and it deserves to be seen.”

Fahrenheit 9/11 caused a firestorm of publicity last month after the Walt Disney Co. refused to allow its Miramax unit to release the movie to theaters, after the parent’s company’s chief officer, Michael Eisner, claimed the movie was too politically charged to carry the Disney imprimatur.

Miramax was then permitted to buy back the movie and find its own distributors. Showtime will handle the sale of rights for pay TV.

Said Lions Gate chief executive Jon Feltheimer: “I think, for a large segment of the population, it is going to be a must-see film. … Forget the controversy, if you look at the body of Michael Moore’s work. It’s really good filmmaking.”

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