How Steven Spielberg Played A Role In The True Story Behind ARGO

I am one of the few people that I know that has not seen the film Argo yet. I totally understand your disappointment in me. The worst part is that I don’t have a good excuse for this. For those of you who have seen the film, here is a cool little story from Blastr that you can add to the crazy situation.

Argo tells the true story of how a CIA agent named Tony Mendez (played by director Ben Affleck) staged an operation to rescue six Americans who had escaped and were hiding at the Canadian embassy in Tehran during the 1979 hostage crisis in which the Iranians held 52 other Americans in captivity. 

Mendez came up with the cover story of pretending to be a Canadian producer looking to shoot a science fiction film on locations in Iran, with the idea being that the six Americans would leave with him, posing as his production crew.

To make the cover work so that the Iranians could not poke any holes in it, Mendez enlisted actual Hollywood producers and filmmakers—including Oscar-winning Planet of the Apes makeup man John Chambers—to set up offices for their fictional production company, take out ads announcing the beginning of production and even hold a table read of the script for the fake movie, which was called Argo

Well, the ruse worked so well that it even fooled other filmmakers and screenwriters. Mendez says in his notes on the mission that by the time the offices of the production company, called Studio Six, were closed, some 26 scripts came through the door—including one sent by Steven Spielberg

Mendez doesn't say what the script was called, but The Playlist theorizes that it could well have been E.T.: The Extraterrestrial (or perhaps the original script that E.T. evolved out of, Night Skies?). The hostage crisis and rescue mission took place roughly when Spielberg was filming Raiders of the Lost Ark, and he might have been shopping his new alien visitation movie around at the time. 

I think that it is hilarious that they did the cover-up so well that everyone one was fooled by it. I would love to know who all contacted the fake company. I think I am going to enjoy this movie a little bit more now when I go see it. 

Until next time….

Billy Out!

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