Letters to the Editor

Author: 'Battle in Seattle' book, movie are not related

A couple of years ago I became aware that a movie, “The Battle in Seattle,” was in the making. As I had written the book, “The Battle in Seattle” (published in 2000), the production of a movie of the same name got my attention.

I tried to get the attention of the producers, but neither my e-mails nor my phone calls were returned. As I was in the midst of writing a rather difficult book at the time, I was neither emotionally, spiritually or intellectually inclined to do battle for “Battle.” I wasn’t financially inclined either. But pretty soon I started getting phone calls and e-mails and was stopped on the street, at the post office and in the grocery store by people congratulating me on the book being made into a movie.

As the filming got under way in Vancouver, B.C. and Seattle, the congratulatory calls increased. And they continued to increase when the movie opened the Seattle International Film Festival. Recently, during the Democratic Convention, “The Battle in Seattle” was part of a film festival in Denver. It is now scheduled for national release in mid-September.

Let me be perfectly clear. Perhaps my book was used as research for the movie, but nobody contacted me and I am in no way benefiting from the film, nor does it represent my book in any way. I saw the movie. It is a fictionalized account of a handful of fictional protesters participating in a historical event. My book, “The Battle in Seattle,” is a real account of real people, real events, real issues and real history. It is a good read, if I may say so myself. It is also respectfully included in quite a few college curricula.

The book, “The Battle in Seattle: The Story Behind and Beyond the WTO Demonstrations” is, in the words of author and visionary, David Korten, “Humane, authoritative, personal and engagingly written, this is the real story of the people, events and issues behind the Battle in Seattle and N30, the day the most international, inclusive and potentially powerful social movement in history announced itself to the world.”

It is real people who are honored in the book — including Ben White, the visionary lifelong activist, who died all too young in 2005. He was responsible for the turtles on the streets of WTO Seattle, as well as for 35 years of saving life on earth.

I’ve created a Web site for the book: www.battleinseattlebook.com, and I’m asking you to please pass this on to anyone you know who was on the streets of WTO Seattle or who might be interested. The event was far too important to overlook the real people involved and the real issues at-large.
Janet Thomas
San Juan Island

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