Boogie Man: The Lee Atwater Story

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Boogie Man: The Lee Atwater Story
Boogie Man Promotional Poster.jpg
Directed by Stefan Forbes
Produced byStefan Forbes, Noland Walker
Starring Eric Alterman
Distributed byInterpositive Media LLC
Release date
September 26, 2008
Running time
86 mins
CountryUnited States

Boogie Man: The Lee Atwater Story is a 2008 U.S. documentary on the campaign tactics used by Lee Atwater, while working on George H. W. Bush's 1988 presidential election campaign, and how those tactics have transformed presidential campaigns in the United States.


In an independent release from InterPositive Media, the film was a Critic's Pick in both The New York Times and The Washington Post , screened at the 2008 Democratic and Republican National Conventions, played 40 American cities in the fall of 2008 and was number seven in nationwide per-screen average the weekend of its release.


Using extensive interviews with colleagues, opponents and friends and archive footage, the film follows the principal's career culminating in the defining Bush '88 Presidential campaign and its aftermath.

Critical reception

The film won the national Edward R. Murrow Award, a 2009 Polk Award for Excellence in Journalism, and the Chris Award at the Columbus International Film & Video Festival. It was nominated for the WGA Award for Best Theatrical Documentary. Director Stefan Forbes received the Emerging Filmmaker Award from the International Documentary Association. Conservatives have criticized the film for what they say is left-wing bias. [1]

Other releases

The documentary was retitled as Dirty Tricks: The Man Who Got the Bushes Elected when it was broadcast in the United Kingdom on BBC Four. [2]

On November 11, 2008, the PBS series Frontline broadcast a slightly shortened version of the documentary.

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  1. Jeffrey Ressner (June 24, 2008). "Atwater doc makes conservatives groan". Politico. Retrieved 2015-03-09.
  2. "Dirty Tricks: The Man Who Got the Bushes Elected". Storyville . BBC. 2008-10-06. Retrieved 2008-10-13.
Interviews with film director Stefan Forbes