Film funder to U: Assessing Troubled Waters for us isn't your job

Today’s story by Twin Cities Daily Planet reporter Molly Priesmeyer takes a poke at the University’s statement that officials there pulled the environmental film “Troubled Waters” to review whether it “meets the specifications of the legislative appropriation to the University.”

An official from one of the funding organizations told her, in effect: That’s not the University’s job. It’s ours and the legislature’s:

Michael Banker, communications manager for LCCMR, said that, while the University has the authority for determining whether the film meets University standards, “the authority to determine whether the project meets the language of the appropriation and LCCMR-approved work program is the responsibility of LCCMR and the legislature.”

Banker said he’s not sure why the University pulled the film. He actually had to go ask the U, he said, because it never informed him of any concerns — or even that it had pulled the film. After he asked Karen Himle, vice president for university relations, she apparently gave him no specifics on what the film’s problems were.

Priesmeyer quotes him:

“To the best of my knowledge, it appears that the concerns and requests to halt the film rose from the Office of University Relations,” he said. “So far, Karen Himle is the only one who has been in communication with LCCMR about concerns.”

Read more in Priesmeyer’s article here.

  • I would like to better understand who actually “owns” the rights to this film. The Bell Museum? the U itself? the filmmaker? I'm confused as to whether this is an issue of copyright control or the venue for the premiere. can the U prevent this film from being released?

  • Alex Friedrich

    Good question about ownership. I suspect it's the U, but I'd have to get the contract.