Michael Moore is the booming voice of the Occupy protests, encouraging activists to continue their battle against the wealthy one per cent of Americans, but he has been uncharacteristically quiet about one thing: his own wealth.
While Michael Moore has denied he is among the top-earners in the country, tax records show he owns an extensive property in one of the country’s most elite communities.
Michael Moore owns a large holiday home on Torch Lake, Michigan in addition to his pricey Manhattan residence.
The spacious 10,000 sq ft property is a far cry from the scene of tightly-packed tents near Wall Street in New York City.
The sprawling timber property has large bay windows, a number of small turrets, a private drive and decking that leads right to the water’s edge.
It is located on the southeastern shore of Torch Lake, regarded by locals as the “third most beautiful lake in the world”.
Michael Moore’s neighbours include Hollywood stars such as Bruce Willis, Madonna and Tim Allen.
The documentary maker also shares the stunning views with corporate executives loathed by Occupy protestors, including ex-Chrysler Chairman Bob Eaton, according to The Michigan View.
Houses on the lake cost as much as $3million.
Michael Moore originally bought the 2,500 sq ft home before expanding to two surrounding lots, according to local real estate sources.
Public records show the property in the name of Michael Moore and his wife, Kathleen Glynn, and notes its taxable value at nearly $1 million.
Local real estate agents estimate the real value of the compound at $2 million, according to The Michigan View.
It places the property near the top one per cent of home values in the Forest Home Township and in the state of Michigan.
The township is roughly 98% white residents, according to statistics from 2009.
Michael Moore, who has toured the Occupy Wall Street demonstrations across the country, has previously defended his wealth.
The documentary maker has claimed he never set out to write a book or film with the intention of making money.
On his blog, Michael Moore wrote: “I do very well – and for a documentary filmmaker, I do extremely well. That, too, drives conservatives bonkers. <<You’re rich because of capitalism!>>, they scream at me.
“Um, no. Didn’t you take Econ 101? Capitalism is a system, a pyramid scheme of sorts, that exploits the vast majority so that the few at the top can enrich themselves more. I make my money the old school, honest way by making things.”
Talking with Piers Morgan about Occupy, Michael Moore joked: “I’m here talking against my own interests.
“I’m not in the one per cent. For a documentary filmmaker I do very well. There’s a big difference between a documentary and Avatar.”
In another interview on Tuesday, Piers Morgan said: “I need you to admit the bleeding obvious. I need you to sit here and say, <<I’m in the one per cent>>, because it’s important.”
Michael Moore refused, saying: “I’m not.”
He said that, even though he is wealthy, “I am devoting my life to those who have less and who have been crapped upon by the system.
“That’s how I spend my time, my energy, my money on trying to up-end this system that I think is a system of violence, it’s a system that’s unfair to the average working person of this country.”
Meanwhile, multimillionaire rapper Jay-Z is launching a line of t-shirts in support of the Occupy movement – but does not intend to share the profits with the protesters.
Jay-Z was recently seen wearing one of the shirts, which changes the phrase “Occupy Wall Street” by crossing out the “W” and adding an “S” to read “Occupy All Streets”.
A spokesperson for Jay-Z’s clothing company, Rocawear, told Business Insider: “The ‘Occupy All Streets T-shirt was created in support of the Occupy Wall Street movement.
“At this time we have not made an official commitment to monetarily support the movement.”
Jay-Z is worth an estimated $450 million.