Michael Moore's controversial film FAHRENHEIT 9/11 will be released in British cinemas this summer (04) - despite being at the centre of a dispute between the OSCAR winner and the WALT DISNEY COMPANY.

Although Disney has banned its MIRAMAX FILMS unit from releasing the film which slams American President George W Bush, British independent firm OPTIMUM RELEASING has bought the UK distribution rights.

Moore believes Disney wants to ban the film because it might jeopardise tax incentives the company receives for its Walt Disney theme park in Florida - where the state governor is the President's brother Jeb Bush.

Optimum Releasing's head of distribution, DANNY PERKINS, says, "Fahrenheit 9/11 is the cornerstone of our 2004 slate.

"It is important that artists and commentators are always free to express their opinion."

The film focuses on how Americans and the White House responded to the September 11 (01) terrorist attacks.

It also traces links between the Bush family and prominent Saudi Arabians, including the family of Osama Bin Laden.

07/05/2004 19:24