Activist filmmaker Michael Moore has built his brand on being a baseball cap-wearing everyman fighting for the 99 percent. But documents released during Moore's recent divorce proceedings have some critics complaining that he lived more like the 1 percent he often targets in his movies.
The Oscar-winning director of "Bowling for Columbine" and "Fahrenheit 9/11" officially ended his 22-year marriage to Kathleen Glynn on Tuesday. The split was marred by squabbling as the couple sorted out their considerable assets, among them nine homes that included a $2 million, 10,000-square-foot manor in a tony Michigan lake community that is also reportedly home to stars such as Madonna and Bruce Willis.
On TODAY Wednesday, NBC's Gabe Gutierrez reported that some of Moore's less-famous neighbors are grumbling about an apparent contradiction between the director's ideals and lifestyle.
"He criticizes capitalism, but capitalism made him rich," one store proprietor told The Detroit News. "Why he decided to live in this conservative area, I have no idea."
Moore has publicly addressed his wealth in recent years, writing in a 2011 essay on his now-defunct personal blog that while he earned millions from his films, he "proudly" paid his seven-figure tax bill, set up a charitable foundation and refrained from purchasing stock in corporations he found objectionable.
The divorce documents suggest that Glynn — who worked as a producer on many of Moore's films — enjoyed the lavish lifestyle more than he did, with Moore lashing out at his estranged partner for turning the couple's lake house into an opulent mansion.
Not everyone feels Moore should apologize for living the good life. "I think he's earned it," another Michigan local told Gutierrez.
At any rate, Moore's attorney issued a statement indicating that the pair divorced amicably. Moore posted the statement to Facebook Tuesday, along with a link to a YouTube video of Bruce Springsteen's "Rosalita (Come Out Tonight)." No word on the significance of the song.