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Michael Moore Talks Detroit Bankruptcy

Days before thousands of film fans flooded northern Michigan for the Traverse City Film Festival, author, activist and Academy Award Winning director Michael Moore, sporting a Star Wars t-shirt and a Detroit Tigers cap, was ripping tickets at the historic State Theater in downtown Traverse City.

The Flint native rose to fame in 1989 with his Oscar winning debut Roger and Me, which explored the effects on the people of Flint in the aftermath of the General Motors exodus. His film Fahrenheit 9/11 is the highest-grossing documentary of all time.

Moore co-founded the film fest in 2005 and helped re-open the State Theatre in 2007. On this particular day, with local media on hand, he was there greet and celebrate the theater’s one millionth customer. After Moore welcomed the first few dozen movie goers through the line, he announced the winner, Sandro Berros, of Plainfield, Indiana, who won a lifetime pass to the State Theatre and the Traverse City Film Festival.

WDET's Travis Wright happened upon the scene. After the celebration, he spoke with Moore, and what his reaction was upon learning Detroit had become the biggest city in American history to file for bankruptcy.

"Huh, well, it's one of the saddest things that ever happened in the state. You know, I think historians, a hundred years from now, will really wonder who we were. You know, it borders on the criminal. Without Detroit, what would this country be? You wouldn't get anywhere, and you wouldn't dance."