Oscar fever! Yards docu-ganda on short list for little gold statue

The Brooklyn Paper
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The Atlantic Yards documentary, “Battle for Brooklyn,” has a fighting chance to take home one of Tinseltown’s top trophies.

Suki Hawley and Michael Galinsky’s exhaustive history of the Prospect Heights mega-project and 14 other true-life tales have been short-listed for an Oscar nomination in the Documentary Feature category by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

The husband-and-wife team of filmmakers from Clinton Hill spent eight years making the documentary, but said the possibility of winning a little gold man was the farthest thing from their minds when they started the project in 2003.

“I’m not placing odds on us [winning],” Galinsky said. “I’m very excited that we even have a chance.”

The documentary is a lengthy step-by-step (by step) account of the tainted approval process that paved the way for Bruce Ratner $5-billion development, which includes the Barclays Center and 16 proposed residential towers.

The land-use saga tells its story through Daniel Goldstein, the Yards opponent who fought to keep his home from being seized by the state via eminent domain. Goldstein failed, of course — and the rest is history.

Still, Goldstein believes that the film’s success gives him a victory that eluded him.

“The Oscar recognition will loudly amplifiy the community’s voice of opposition and further expose the corrupt Atlantic Yards boondoggle,” he said. “It also provides clear evidence that the community’s fight in Brooklyn has universal interest.”

Five nominees from the list will be announced on Jan. 24, one month before the 84th annual Academy Awards. The shortlist, which was whittled down from a group of 124 award-winning documentaries, includes “Jane’s Journey,” about chimpanzee expert Jane Goodall; and “Hell and Back Again,” the story of one Marine’s return to normal life after serving in Afghanistan.

Well, it was fun while it lasted.

“Battle for Brooklyn” at Brooklyn Heights Cinema [70 Henry St. at Orange Street in Brooklyn Heights, (718) 596-7070], Nov. 30, 6 pm.

Reach reporter Daniel Bush at or by calling (718) 260-8310. Follow him at
Updated 5:28 pm, July 9, 2018
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Reasonable discourse

William says:
D. Goldstein is a scam artist. Just another Jew who took advantage of the situation to make money. No documentary can change the facts.
Nov. 29, 2011, 10:02 am
Joey from Clinton Hills says:
Daniel Goldstein is a hero. I hope the film wins and Galinsky lets Daniel make the acceptance speech at the Oscars. Thank you Ratner, without you, there would be no movie.
Nov. 29, 2011, 1:21 pm
Neighborhood Guy from The Community says:
Hey Gersh:

Why such a dickish headline and kicker?
Nov. 29, 2011, 2:06 pm
prillis says:
because he's a sellout, but hopes this documentary will rewrite history:
Nov. 29, 2011, 2:22 pm
Bill from Park Slope says:
Gee, I wonder if Bruce Bender and the other Forest City flacks will mount their own anti-Oscar campaign against this great documentary? Maybe threaten legal action for telling the truth? Or promise lots of good stuff they can later renege on? I hope so! Then it would definitely win!
Nov. 29, 2011, 3:12 pm
prillis says:
1. ratner is a jackass, but it's expected that a businessman is a f--ker who only cares about profits.

2. d.goldstein held himself out to be a principled leader, but in fact he was just a sellout waiting for a higher payday.

ask goldstein how much of his money went to others who were displaced.
Nov. 29, 2011, 3:18 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Anyone who thinks that Goldstein is a sell out probably works for Ratner or at least believes everything he says hook, line, and sinker. He was at a point where the ESDC seized his property, and despite owning it, he was more like a tennant instead. Even if he was allowed to appeal, his building was going to be demolished either way reguardless of the result. Perhaps those of who still think that should actually see the film if not already. I'm glad that this film has been nominated for an Oscar, and I hope that it wins it. BTW, if you actually want to talk to Goldstein in person to ask what really happened to him, then I suggest going over to the Maysles Center over at 343 Lenox Avenue between 127th and 128th Streets over in Harlem on 12/9 at 7:30 PM, because I know you have questions only he can answer, which makes it the best oppurtunity to do so if you have a bone to pick with him.
Nov. 29, 2011, 7 pm
DS from PH says:
I think he's a sellout and I don't work for Ratner. Who else that was forced out got 3 million?
Nov. 30, 2011, 10:07 am
DSreader says:
To answer DS, a whole bunch of people. Try Menachem Friedfertig for starters
Nov. 30, 2011, 11:34 am
DSreader says:
To answer DS, a whole bunch of people. Try Menachem Friedfertig for starters
Nov. 30, 2011, 11:34 am
DS from PH says:
So one other person is a whole bunch of people? Seems more accurate to say a handful of pricks--D. Goldstein included--made out like bandits.
Nov. 30, 2011, 11:38 am
William says:
@DSreader - Nice find! Yet another Jew who took advantage of the situation!
Nov. 30, 2011, 11:58 am
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
If anyone is trying to rewrite history, it's Ratner, his cronies, and any politicians that are on his side. I never bought into what Bloomberg said on claiming that people will forget, when that's hardly true. The demolition of station house of Penn Station was done over 40 years ago yet many are still talking about it, and many of them weren't even alive then. Even supporters who have seen the film didn't find it biased and saw it as being fair and balanced. If you still believe that this film is some kind of propaganda, then it's obvious that you haven't seen it all. I still suggest you meet Goldstein in person and ask him what he really did it for, because I am sure he can answer it unless you happen to be scared that he will just debunk you, giving a major humilation there.
Nov. 30, 2011, 3:39 pm
William says:
@Tal, I can barely hear you with D.Goldstein's c*ck in your mouth.

You just don't get it. There are plenty of people who hate Bloomberg, Ratner, and all the other 'cronies,' AND ALSO think D.Goldjew is a complete sellout.
Nov. 30, 2011, 3:46 pm
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
William, as an Israeli-born Jew, I actually feel offended by that. Religion had absolutely nothing to do with this. Just saying that felt as if you were an anti-Semite, and there was already an hate crime going in Midwood. Also, I expect a big apology from you after saying that. Nevertheless, go over to the place I said on 12/9 to talk to him in person, and all of your questions will be answered unless you are too busy making your chicken outfit seeing that you are probably more afraid of him than he is of you.
Nov. 30, 2011, 7:01 pm
Josef from downtown bklyn says:
Brooklyn Paper: commenter William (who may be sock-puppeting ds from ph and prillis) is using your comment space for bigoted ad-hominem insults. Please remove these comments.

I am forced to agree with Tal Barzilai and delighted to concur with my namesake from Clinton Hill that Goldstein was fighting the good fight, and was certainly not the only person who profited from a Forest City buyout.
Dec. 1, 2011, 11:17 am
Stephen Witt from Kensington says:
As the only journalist that has covered Atlantic Yards since its inception, I have not always seen eye-to-eye with Daniel Goldstein. That said, any reference to his religion is anti-Semitism pure and simple. BTW - I have a novel called The Street Singer coming out about Atlantic Yards in the Spring
Dec. 1, 2011, 11:22 am
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
The amount that Goldstein got was chump change compared to what Ratner's CEO's make. Even the lowest form on there makes more than that. That compensation money wouldn't even be enough to live in the lowest rents, and I am talking about the so-called affordable housing here. He should have fought for much more. Either way, he was never seen as a sellout, because if he was, he would have taken the first offer he got rather than stay there for that long. If anyone is a sell out here, it's Bertha Lewis, who is not only paid to agree with Ratner, but signed a gag order that she can't go against it. BTW, back in the 1980's in her south Bronx home, she left when the residents were about to fight the landlord for raising the rents on them, so she is the real sell out here.
Dec. 1, 2011, 4:02 pm
William says:
@Tal - thanks for the clarification. I didn't get how you felt about Ratner the first two three times you commented.

@S.Witt "any reference to his religion is anti-Semitism pure and simple." Sounds like something a Jew would say.
Dec. 1, 2011, 6:10 pm
Dennis sinneD from Williamsburg says:
I am not a Jew. I am Puerto Rican. It's unfortunate I have to identify my ethnicity so that no one will accuse me of bloodsuckerism when I also agree with Tal and Witt and anyone else who thinks Goldstein's religion is irrelevant and inflammatory to the charges raised against Goldstein [which deserved discussion, but, in my opinion, that discussion having been closed by Tal's observations]. The ad hominem attacks as well as the anti-Semitism are unnecessary and counterproductive.

Again, much of this vileness is due to the blind pseudonymity of the commentors. Brooklyn Paper must adopt a format where identity is transparent--such as that employed by the NY Post.
Dec. 2, 2011, 8:50 am
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville, NY says:
Dennis, just wait until you see Nets Daily. Whenever they talk about the move to Brooklyn, some of them not only support the move so much, they tend to get very defensive and make personal attacks at Goldstein, Oder, or anyone else who opposes or questions the move. The one to really watch for is Net Income, because he will defend Ratner every step of the way and even considers him a lord an saviour. Some of them even tend to deny or claim that you can't please everyone to justify everything done wrong, while others will try to claim that the end will justify the means just as long as they get what they want in the end with putting anything aside even if it was real shady. One other thing, this Net Income person never uses his real name even when he was interviewed once by the NY Times, which shows how much of a coward he really is.
Dec. 2, 2011, 11:10 am
Tal Barzilai from Pleasantville says:
It's not that I have any problems with those that disagree with me, it is those who have actually attacked me for thinking differently than they were. Just b/c I say that the Freedumb Tower is a monunement to terrorism or some ilegitimate replacement, doesn't mean that I am trying to stop anyone from liking it. That is my opinion and I am entitled to it whether others like it or not. I don't mind hearing someone saying that they find rebuilding the Twins as being disrespecting or going back to the past just as long as they make any personal attacks at me for choosing that side as well as on others who share my view. As a nerdy leftist, I am all for having debates on issues like this, b/c it shows how something can change among the type of view. For example, there are those who find hate groups such as the KKK and neo-Nazis to be good people rather than bad. Another way to think about what I like is like the WNBA, b/c it's not like I am forcing anyone to watch its games or buy their products. If some really don't like the way I view things, then it's better to answer my posts rather than make those attacks, which was what many narcissitic fourmers over at streetsblogger and Nets Daily did at me in the past when I clearly didn't stop them on what they wanted. It just seems to me that when you have great talent in the WNBA you really don't need these streetsblogger movies and expensive NBA alternatives. Irreguardless I will have my say and this helps to debunk the lies being told and expose the racists for who they really are.
-Tal Barzilai
Dec. 20, 2011, 1:09 pm

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