Glenn Beck’s ‘Broke’ Inspired by Michael Covel’s ‘Broke’

Glenn Beck's Broke

Glenn Beck (and his co-author Kevin Balfe) released a new book today (Oct 2010) titled Broke.

I happen to have a documentary film titled Broke released last year.

A coincidence on titles?

Readers can judge. Some background might help…

Once my film was completed it made the rounds to many potential distribution outlets. One outlet among many was Glenn Beck’s office (my film ended up premiering on The Documentary Channel). Beck’s co-author Kevin Balfe emailed me October 1, 2009 to say:

“I think you’ve produced an excellent documentary but it’s not a great fit for us at this time.”

Did not think too much of that as rejection is part of the business in a creative world. Easy come, easy go. However, a year later it was an interesting surprise to see Beck’s book ‘Broke’ announced in Aug 2010. My gut immediately said, “I know where they got that title from.”

Beck confirmed when his title changed (audio) in Sep 2010:

“This one started out last October [2009] as ‘The Plan’, but we decided to make it ‘Broke.'”

‘Broke’ was a great title for a film and it is interesting to see Beck change his book title due to my random 2008 moment of inspiration.

Michael Covel's Broke

11 thoughts on “Glenn Beck’s ‘Broke’ Inspired by Michael Covel’s ‘Broke’

  1. “an excellent documentary but it’s not a great fit for us at this time.”

    Timing was not right because the mass media was still pushing the “economic recovery” theme at that time.

  2. Perhaps Dan.

    I do see a clear distinction though. Beck sees a usefulness in some politicians, I don’t 🙂

  3. Also, the odds are very high that the message of my ‘Broke’ will be the way how things unfold…

  4. Sheep in the market, sheep in media. Some are born followers, I guess. At least you know that we know who was here first.

  5. I think Glenn Beck does a lot of good and interesting things, but this is just planing old Bad Form and capitalizing on your “positive trend”

  6. hah I don’t think Beck is any sheep etc. I saw this yesterday Michael and immediately thought of your documentary. I was like HEY! Beck just copied Covel! Congratulations man! It is good and bad haha.

  7. Michael – I love your film (and your books), but couldn’t understand why you picked the title “Broke” when I thought that only described the 1st part of the film on why we do stupid things that keep us from succeeding.

    I thought the last (and most important) part of your film was all about a path forward for those who didn’t want to be dependent on social security for their retirement, with many, many examples of real people (models for NLP’ers) that have done exactly that and are far from broke today.

    Whenever I need to get my mind right, I watch the last half of your film and all those fantastic interviews you did. Mixing the investors and the poker players was true genius on your part, too.

    So to me, I thought “Broke” wasn’t as powerful or descriptive a name for your excellent documentary as you could have chosen. I don’t plan on reading Beck’s book, and can easily imagine controversy on all the causes for our condition. But your documentary – with all those excellent interviews, tied in with your Trend Following books – really hits the ball out of the park as a proven solution for those willing to follow.

  8. My film is definitely bi-polar, but I felt the setup needed to be there to get to the 2nd half. ‘Broke: The New American Dream’ is actually inspired by Ed Seykota’s famed maxim ‘Everyone gets what they want.’

    Harsh reality? Many people will be broke…

  9. Of course I love your film. You were kind enough to include my thoughts as a member of the cast. My article on my web page entitled “Buy and Hold Is Dead” should be a must read for any investor who thinks they do not need to be a Trend Follower.

  10. It’s a popular title: There’s a documentary on the pawn shop industry called “Broke” too. But yours was first.

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