Paging Michael Moore. Ron George is ready for his close-up.
A task force charged with devising ways to “improve public information” in California’s judiciary is recommending that court leaders hire a documentary filmmaker “to create a brief film conveying the importance of fair, impartial, and accountable courts.”
The Task Force on Public Information and Education says the movie should be “stimulating” but also, apparently, G-rated.
“The film should be general enough to be appropriate for various audiences, including the general public, voters, senior high school students, and jurors,” the group writes in an interim report that the Judicial Council will review Friday.
The task force is an arm of the Commission for Impartial Courts, the chief-justice-created body that’s supposed to offer recommendations on improving judicial accountability and integrity (and probably judicial image, too.) The commission’s 81-page report (.pdf) offers a bunch of suggestions: Cultivate “influence leaders” who will tout the courts’ good work. Promote more civics education in schools. Provide more impartial information about judicial candidates to voters.
But it’s the make-a-film proposal that should get marquee attention. Perhaps it was the brainchild of task force member Jonathan Shapiro, the federal prosecutor-turned-television-writer who has produced “Boston Legal” and “The Practice.”
Legal Pad wonders what the Legislature would think of a judicial branch budget that’s flush enough to finance a documentary. But for now, no matter. Think of the potential movie titles: “The Best Little Courthouse in Tehama.” “Raging Bail.” “La Vie En Res.”
Feel free to submit your own suggestions.
— Cheryl Miller