What's The Real 'Truth'? Network Says One Thing, Movie Another

CBS says it knows the truth about the movie “Truth,” which focuses on a controversial CBS “60 Minutes II” story. The network says there are too many errors in the movie -- as well as being a “disservice” to other journalists.

Perhaps to no one’s surprise, CBS isn’t running any advertising for the movie.

Okay, fair enough.  That said, other TV networks have had no problem airing the film’s advertising.  

From Oct. 2 through Oct. 19, its ad spend amounted to $409,712, according to -- with more than half being aired on NBC, some $226,891.  TBS had $58,147 worth of advertising; Headline News, $21,901; Comedy Central, $21,901; and ABC, $17, 235.

On “60 Minutes II”  in 2004, a story questioned whether President George W. Bush received preferential treatment during his stint in the Texas Air National Guard in the late 1960s and early ‘70s. The source came from memos which could not be authenticated. This led to the firing of producer Mary Mapes, while network anchor Dan Rather resigned.



Perhaps some insight comes from one of the film producers, who said: “The events ‎depicted in ‘Truth’ are still vigorously debated, and that’s a good t‎hing.” For her part, Mapes has acknowledged that she made mistakes. The movie also focuses on the mistakes.

In one video trailer for “Truth,” the advertising doesn’t mention CBS. The underlying message seems to tell a potential audience: Even if the journalism went wrong, we should still be looking for the truth.

Sony and its media agency wanted to get this message on key CBS News programs including “60 Minutes”and  the “CBS Evening News, and “CBS This Morning”  -- as well as “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert.”

But you have to wonder just what Sony, and its media agency, truly expected after that media buying call to CBS.

For its part, CBS is doing what other big companies would be doing -- protecting the CBS News brand, as well as keeping up the morale of current CBS News employees.

Right now, there’s a story to tell -- from someone’s point of view.

2 comments about "What's The Real 'Truth'? Network Says One Thing, Movie Another".
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  1. Douglas Ferguson from College of Charleston, October 20, 2015 at 12:18 p.m.

    When Bush warned of evidence about WOMD that "could not be authenticated," it was a lie. But when Rather and Mapes produced a document about Texas Air National Guard events "from memos which could not be authenticated," it was the truth. Neat trick.

  2. Paula Lynn from Who Else Unlimited, October 20, 2015 at 5:46 p.m.

    "The truth is out there."

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