If you’ve seen ridiculous pictures of Ben Affleck with his hair combed down and a full beard, he’s not going out incognito from the paparazzi, it’s his look for the movie Argo.
Now I barely knew anything about Argo until a friend of mine clued me into it, and it’s actually a great story for a movie. It’s also a true story I’d never heard about before, and apparently Warner Brothers has high hopes for it, because it’s being moved closer to awards season.
So what is Argo exactly? As the Hollywood Reporter tells us, it’s about six US diplomats who were rescued during the 1979 Iran hostage crisis, and they’re snuck out in a very clever way.
The CIA claims they’re making a genre movie, but it’s all a fraud. As the Huffington Post explains, the whole thing was set up by a spy named Tony Mendez, who Affleck plays in the film. The whole ruse even had a fake studio with offices set up, Studio Six, and they snuck the diplomats out by telling the Iranians they were crew members working on the fake genre film.
Studio Six was set up in real movie offices that were previously making The China Syndrome. They also ran ads in the trade papers, and it was so convincing, real screenwriters were sending in their scripts, hoping to get their projects made that company. Mendez even claimed Steven Spielberg sent in a screenplay for consideration.
The fake movie they were making was called Argo, hence the title, which was taken from a knock knock joke. In addition to playing Mendez, Aflleck also directed Argo, which reportedly has gotten strong buzz from early test screenings. Argo also stars Bryan Cranston, Alan Arkin, John Goodman and Kyle Chandler.
Affleck stars in Argo and directed the film as well, and now Warners has it coming out on October 12 from its original release date of September 14, where it will be more eligible for potential Academy Awards.