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Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by it's me on Wed 26 Sep 2012, 21:23

this Saturday in LA?
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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by EEOsandy on Wed 26 Sep 2012, 21:34

it's me wrote: this Saturday in LA?

That is what I saw on Twitter.
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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by LornaDoone on Sat 29 Sep 2012, 19:11

Argo is getting so much Oscar buzz press. Entertainment Weekly is saying Ben Affleck might get an Oscar nomination for Director and for Picture.
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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by Katiedot on Sun 30 Sep 2012, 03:18

Has anyone seen the film yet (pre-screenings etc)? There's a lot of talk on IMDb about this being a propaganda film etc.
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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by melbert on Sun 30 Sep 2012, 03:36

The only thing I've seen is the trailer. And that makes me want to see it even more, even if I'm not a big Ben fan.
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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by Katiedot on Sun 30 Sep 2012, 04:40

Why aren't you a Big Ben fan, Mel?

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Big Ben



[sorry, I couldn't resist!]
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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by silly girl on Sun 30 Sep 2012, 08:15

Here is a tweet from someone who was there....about an hour ago.


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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by it's me on Sun 30 Sep 2012, 09:50

thanks!
nothing more???
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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by Joanna on Sun 30 Sep 2012, 11:34

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Ben Affleck changes Argo postscript
for Ken Taylor


Published on Wednesday September 19, 2012

Martin Knelman
Entertainment Columnist


This is a story with a novel Hollywood ending: how Ken Taylor and Ben Affleck became new best friends after the Star revealed that Taylor’s pals were offended by the way he was portrayed in Affleck’s new movie Argo.
When Affleck heard about the controversy, he picked up the phone and called Taylor, Canada’s former ambassador to Iran. And as Affleck explained Tuesday in an exclusive interview with the Star,
he told Taylor, “If you have issues, I’ll address them.”

The result: a postscript line onscreen at the end of the movie, which Taylor’s friends regarded as an insult both to him and to Canada, has been removed and replaced by a new postscript: “The involvement of the CIA complemented efforts of the Canadian embassy to free the six held in Tehran. To this day the story stands as an enduring model of international co-operation between governments.”

Argo is the tale of how six U.S. diplomats escaped from Iran, after extremists seized control of the U.S. embassy in Tehran in November 1979 and took 63 people hostage. The six were sheltered at the Canadian embassy until they made their escape in January 1980. (The others were not released until 1981.)
When Argo had its world premiere at a TIFF gala at Roy Thomson Hall on Sept. 7, the suggestion was that CIA operatives were the true heroes in the six fugitives’ escape.
The old postscript sent the message that, for political reasons, Canada took the credit. A sarcastic kicker noted that Taylor received 112 citations. The clear implication was that he did not deserve them.
When Affleck phoned Taylor, he said, “Frankly, if this bothers you, then I’ll change it.”
At Affleck’s invitation, Taylor, now 77, and his wife, Pat Taylor, flew from their New York home to Los Angeles, checked into
the Four Seasons
Hotel and attended a private screening of Argo on the Warner Bros. lot. Before this week, they had not seen it.
“I expressed my concern with certain details in the movie,” Taylor told me just before leaving his hotel to catch a flight back to New York. “In reality, Canada was responsible for the six and the CIA was a junior partner.
But I realize this is a movie and you have to keep the audience on the edge of their seats. Ben was very gracious and we got along really well. There are a few points I want to address.
Now Ben and I both feel free to talk about them.”
So well, in fact, that Taylor and his wife taped a commentary for the extra features on the DVD version of Argo, which will not be released until 2013.

“I’m so pleased this had a great happy ending,” Affleck says.
Indeed, he spent hours hanging out with Taylor and his wife, touring the Warner Bros. lot and having lunch there.
“I love Ken,” adds Affleck. “I already had so much respect for him before we met. He is a class act.”
Affleck invited the Taylors to attend both the L.A. premiere of the movie on Oct. 6 and a special Washington, D.C., screening on Oct. 10. They declined the L.A. event but will happily be front and centre for the D.C. screening.
“We’re making it into a ‘Thank you Canada’ occasion,” says Affleck. Many key Canadians will be invited, he promises.

That’s quite a contrast to the Toronto premiere. Taylor wasn’t invited to that gala and, according to his friends, that was lucky, given the suggestion that he didn’t really deserve his status as the hero who masterminded the escape of the six U.S. diplomatic workers.
The movie gives the leading role to a CIA employee named Tony Mendez, played by Affleck, who came up with a scheme for a fake supposedly Canadian movie called Argo. The fugitives were disguised as a film crew and smuggled out on fake Canadian passports.
According to Taylor, several details of the plot are pure fiction. There was never any crisis about getting the plane tickets for the six, as in the climatic scenes of Argo, because he bought three sets of plane tickets, paid for by Pat Taylor. Nor did Taylor ever threaten to close down the Canadian embassy, leaving his secret U.S. house guests with nowhere to hide. Nor did the six ever go to a bazaar.
“I would never have allowed that,” says Taylor. And oh, by the way, while in Tehran, Mendez was taken care of by the Canadian embassy.
“What matters to me is the essence and importance of diplomacy,” Taylor sums up. “It matters more now than ever before. It’s a risky business but vitally important.
“You can’t just close the office,” he adds, in an apparent swipe at Ottawa’s recent decision to close the Canadian embassy in Iran. For Ben Affleck, what counts is this: “It’s important to tell stories about how two countries worked together.” Fade out on Hollywood’s real-life bromance.

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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by Joanna on Sun 30 Sep 2012, 12:05

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Argo – review by Guardian


Ben Affleck's oddball mix of political thriller and movie-biz satire about a strange rescue mission during the 1979 Iran hostage crisis is entertaining but schlocky



Bogus blockbuster ...
Ben Affleck in Argo Photograph: Claire Folger/AP

Reality gets a primping in Ben Affleck's version of the true story of Tony Mendez, a CIA operative who helped a group of six American diplomats impersonate a Canadian film crew, in order to escape Iran during the 1979 hostage crisis.

Mendez, an "exfiltration" expert, was a tenacious and creative agent who, in the midst of the Iranian revolution, tapped his Hollywood contacts to help him launch a bogus blockbuster that would free the six. Scripted, storyboarded and backed by Oscar-winning makeup artist John Chambers (played here by John Goodman), Argo was a movie that was designed not to be. A Star Wars knock-off set in the middle east, it would exist just long enough to provide a good cover story.

Affleck's Argo is an oddball mix of political thriller and movie biz satire, flicking between Tehran and Tinseltown to create an entertaining, if shamelessly embellished account of one of the CIA's strangest operations. Mendez's fascinating report on "the Canadian caper" suggests none of the palpitating tension of Chris Terrio's screenplay. The mission is described as strange, but not particularly stressful, with the first meeting between Mendez and the hostages descending into a fit of giggles over a knock-knock joke based on their phoney movie's title ("Ahhh go fuck yourself" is the punchline).
There's very little of that levity in the film. The hostages are grim and one-dimensional; Affleck's Mendez is a surly, determined work horse. The joke is included, but co-opted as a clarion call for the cause.
"Argo fuck yourself," says Goodman down the line from Hollywood. "Argo fuck yourself," Affleck intones solemnly back.



This is pitched as a patriotic, Hollywood-saves-the-day yarn, a juicy slab of dangling Oscar bait. But there's a danger that its chest-beating could drown out the strength in its subtleties.
The film is edited at a clip, the set design is superb and the supporting cast, including turns from Richard Kind, Kyle Chandler and Philip Baker Hall, is a who's who of people you'd like to see more of in the movies.

There's a degree of puffery in the writing, however, that makes this drama untrustworthy. The Iranians are portrayed either as raving mob – Affleck tries to raise the stakes by inviting us to glimpse Tehran from behind the embassy's curtains – or as honourable servant, putting herself in danger by standing between the crowd and the terrified westerners.
The diplomatic crisis created an environment that was extremely dangerous for US citizens in Iran, but the baddies here are so leering, and their victims so weak, that it feels like the schlocky spirit of the B-movie Argo has leaked through.

That said, this fantasy does have its excitement. The chase ending is jarringly false, but it pushes the story to a heart-racing conclusion. The post-credits sequence shows real-world photos of Tehran at the time, matched with stills from the film: they're impressively similar. Affleck seems to have simultaneously shot for authenticity and wallowed in a fiction. I needed a little more light and a lot less drama. Argo-t bored waiting for it.
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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by . on Sun 30 Sep 2012, 13:09

Los Angeles, CA: Los Angeles Premiere of "Argo" on October 4, 2012
Posted on Friday, September 28th, 2012 10:59 AM by Scott Jentsch

Warner Bros. Pictures announced the details for the Los Angeles premiere of the upcoming dramatic thriller Argo. The event will be held on Thursday, October 4, 2012 at the Samuel Goldwyn Theater at A.M.P.A.S. in Beverly Hills, California. Celebrities will begin arriving at 6pm and the screening begins at 7pm.

Attending from the movie are Ben Affleck, Bryan Cranston, Alan Arkin, John Goodman, Scoot McNairy, Rory Cochrane, Kerry Bishé, Clea Duvall, Chris Messina, Adrienne Barbeau, Ali Saam, screenwriter Chris Terrio, producers George Clooney and Grant Heslov, author Tony Mendez, and many more. Additional guests are also expected to attend.

Based on real events, the dramatic thriller Argo chronicles the life-or-death covert operation to rescue six Americans, which unfolded behind the scenes of the Iran hostage crisis, focusing on the little-known role that the CIA and Hollywood played—information that was not declassified until many years after the event.

Argo opens nationwide on October 12, 2012. Select theaters have advance showtimes and tickets available, so head over to the Showtimes page for details of the when and the where. For more information, including photos, videos, and links to the IMDb and official web site, please see the Movie Information page for Argo.

Source: Warner Bros. Pictures Press Release

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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by it's me on Sun 30 Sep 2012, 13:47

Rolling Eyes
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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by silly girl on Sun 30 Sep 2012, 20:10

Not sure if these were from the screening or a press conference but here are two tweets regarding GC and filming:




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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by silly girl on Mon 01 Oct 2012, 15:40

From a Celebitchy article but from an Access Hollywood interview a GC mention....only copying that part:


In the second part of his interview with Access Hollywood, Ben discusses Argo and you can tell he freaking loved making that movie. He gets all excited discussing it and praises the scriptwriter especially. Ben revealed how George Clooney, his co-producer, brought him the script and joked “He and his partner, Grant – and I mean his producing partner not his life partner although sometimes I don’t know with those two – he and Grant sent the script and said ‘Hey you want to do it?’… next thing I knew it was off and running.”

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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by Katiedot on Mon 01 Oct 2012, 18:34

That's so cool! So George pitched the story to Ben Affleck?
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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by Maggy on Mon 01 Oct 2012, 18:43

and all this talk about George not liking Ben Rolling Eyes
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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by laetval on Thu 04 Oct 2012, 19:54

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Inside Grant Heslov's Partnership With George Clooney and Their Next Film

In the world of Hollywood, Grant Heslov’s got a pretty good gig: he’s George Clooney’s wingman.
Heslov’s been close friends with Clooney since their days shooting hoops in between auditions as up-and-coming actors (Heslov didn’t do too shabby, with supporting roles in films like “True Lies,” “Enemy of the State” and “The Scorpion King”), and when his pal eventually got the juice to get his own creative projects off the ground, Heslov shifted into a role as writer-producer, helping Clooney craft the screenplays for “Good Night and Good Luck” and the recent “Ides of March,” as well as directing the Clooney-starring “Men Who Stare At Goats.”

Heslov tells PopcornBiz that he and Clooney have a back-and-forth writing process, tossing ideas around like they did the basketball. “We really kick the story around and bounce stuff off and we sort of hit our heads against the wall,” he says of their approach. “And then it just depends on who has an affinity for a certain piece, so there is no real set way. It's not like I write a scene and then he writes a scene and then we meet and talk about it. We sit in the same room. We write the scenes together. We knock it around. We'll read it overnight. We'll come back in and say, 'This doesn't work.’ It's just sort of really collaborative.”

Despite the usual early struggles and setbacks as they launched their Hollywood careers, Heslov says neither one of them was ever ready to drop out and find a more stable career. “I don't think that George ever got very close to it, but I had a day job – I was more than close,” says Heslov. “I went to USC and studied theater. When I was in college I got a television series as an actor, but then I graduated from college and then I didn't work for two years. I worked at a limousine company for a few years and then I worked some more, but it was sporadic – It was like guest-starring stuff you'd get. Then I bought editing equipment and I started editing actor's demo reels, and that's sort of how I learned a lot about filmmaking. Because not only was I just editing stuff, I was also re-editing, because people want the be the main thing in the scene. Then I started editing some short films. I edited Paul Thomas Anderson's first short film in my apartment. It turned into a nice little company, actually, and I ended up selling it. That was my day job, but then I finally got to a point where the acting had taken over.”

Heslov says that of their old gang of friends from the early 90s salad days “everybody has made it – but not everybody has made it in show business. Some of them decided that it wasn't for them. A couple of guys never were in show business and so that wasn't an issue, but everyone has sort of come to a good place, sort of found their niche and where they're supposed to be and we're all still buddies. [Actor] Richard Kind was one of our buddies and obviously he's done well. He has a part in 'Argo' and is really funny in it.”
“Argo” is the next film from Heslov and Clooney’s Smokehouse Pictures, a bizarre true-life story set during the 1979 hostage crisis in Iran, in which CIA uses a fake Hollywood movie shoot to enter Tehran and try to smuggle out a small group of Americans hiding out at the Canadian embassy. The film stars and is directed by another multi-hyphenate: Ben Affleck.

“Somebody in my company brought me article that was in 'Details' Magazine. I read it and I said, 'This would make a fantastic film. Let’s get the option,'” says Heslov. “Then we hired this guy [Chris Terrio] to write it, who really hadn't written much, and he wrote a fantastic script. George and I were going to make it. Neither one of us was going to direct it. We were going to find a director, and maybe George was going to be in it, depending on who the director was. And while we were making 'Ides of March' we got a call from the studio saying that Ben Affleck had read it and was really interested in directing it and possibly being in it. We said, 'That sounds really interesting,' because we thought that his last film ("The Town") was great. So George and I got on the phone with Ben and we had a long talk and talked about it and decided, 'Yeah, you should do it.' It's cool. We just finished our fifth week of shooting.”

As an intriguing side-note, the real-life CIA hired comic book artist Jack Kirby – co-creator of Captain America, Thor, the Fantastic Four and countless more characters – to create a series of storyboards and conceptual designs that helped sell the illusion that a real movie was going to be made. “Jack Kirby is in it, yeah – not the Jack Kirby, but yes, “ says Heslov. “It's a small part, but the storyboards play a significant role in the piece. We've actually shot the Jack Kirby stuff already with Michael Parks. He's like in every Quentin Tarantino movie and he was a big star when he was younger.”

Heslov says that, no matter their creative successes or failures, he and Clooney always agree on a very simple philosophy: “I know that I can speak for George in this, too: we want to make films where when we are old and sitting at the Farmer's Market having breakfast that we can look back on and say, 'Wow. We made some films that we're proud of,’” he says. “’’Some of them that people got and some of them people didn't get, but they're the films that we wanted to make.' I think that's it. I hope that we can make a difference within our unions and within the things that are important to us in our town.”
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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by laetval on Thu 04 Oct 2012, 20:14

Interview with producer Grant Heslov on Argo.

1. On the story.
2. On Ben Affleck.
3. On sequestering the actors playing the house guests.


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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by silly girl on Thu 04 Oct 2012, 20:41

Great video...thanks....I like GH!

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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by cindigirl on Thu 04 Oct 2012, 20:45

Thanks for the vid laetval - If you scrounge around do you think you could find a video interview with George? Please!!! I'm suffering from Clooney deprivation. LOL
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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by laetval on Thu 04 Oct 2012, 20:57

cindigirl wrote:Thanks for the vid laetval - If you scrounge around do you think you could find a video interview with George? Please!!! I'm suffering from Clooney deprivation. LOL

I didn't find any george's interview for Argo, sorry.
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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by cindigirl on Thu 04 Oct 2012, 20:59

Thanks for trying lip smack
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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by Joanna on Thu 04 Oct 2012, 21:08



Cindi....I posted some interviews on this thread and other film threads in September....don't know if you found them or not ?


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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by cindigirl on Thu 04 Oct 2012, 21:20

I did find them Jo. Thanks - hopefully there be some media attention at his Argo function tonight. cameraflash
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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by Joanna on Thu 04 Oct 2012, 21:24

Yes sireeeee......that would be good !
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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by Joanna on Thu 04 Oct 2012, 21:34

Leeds International Film Festival is Argo for Launch

Published: 4th October 2012 10:19

Ben Affleck's new comic thriller ‘Argo' has been announced as the opening gala screening at this year's Leeds International Film Festival.

The film based on the remarkable true story of a CIA expert posing as a fake film director in order to infiltrate Iran and rescue of a group of Americans stranded there in 1979 is a strong contender for the Oscars and will open the annual festival by being shown at Leeds Town Hall on Thursday 1 November.


Now in its 26th year, the biggest film festival in England to be held outside London runs until Sunday 18 November and will boast more than 150 feature films, over 130 short films and nearly 250 screening events.

To coincide with the full programme being released on [You must be registered and logged in to see this link.] and tickets going on sale tomorrow (Friday 5 October), a special preview of the festival will be held on Friday night from 7pm in Leeds Town Hall as part of Light Night. Preview trailers of some of the films to be shown will be screened followed by a free showing of musical crime comedy ‘Sound of Noise' from 8:30pm which was a big hit with audiences at last year's festival. Entry is free on the night and no tickets are required.
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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by silly girl on Fri 05 Oct 2012, 19:32

Interesting article from Nikki Finke and Deadline.com. Talks about the premier but also talks about the movie itself and the real people involved. Oh and there is another premiere in Wash DC next week.


Oscar Buzz Increases As Ben Affleck, George Clooney Celebrate ‘Argo’s’ Hollywood Premiere


After extremely successful film festival launches in Telluride and Toronto, Warner Bros. thriller and big Oscar hopeful, Argo (10/12), finally hit Hollywood last night with a West Coast premiere at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences’ Samuel Goldwyn Theatre. And a big postparty bash at the Beverly Hills Hotel pool drew not only the cast and key creatives from the film but also the real people behind the 1979-set Iran hostage drama. They included Tony Mendez, the CIA operative who came up with a novel plan to rescue six American hostages stuck in the Canadian embassy in Tehran by creating a fake Hollywood movie for which they posed as members of the production team. Ben Affleck directs and stars as Mendez in the film which he also produced with Grant Heslov and George Clooney (who initially optioned the material and was originally planning to direct and star himself before he got busy on other projects and Affleck came aboard).

I talked to numerous Academy and HFPA members who were invited and reaction, in a word, was ecstatic. As he was leaving the party Affleck, getting lots of praise from the crowd, said the reaction made him happy. It should. Warners was smart to specifically invite a big contingent of awards voters and bloggers for the launch. It’s a strategy Harvey Weinstein perfected with his premieres and it makes a statement, ‘we know what we have and we are in this for the win’. Since the fests, Argo has been at, or near the top of most pundits’ likely Oscar nominees.

Alan Arkin plays the real Hollywood producer hired to make the “fake” movie seem real and got big laughs with his cynicial lines about the profession that played particularly well with this industry-heavy audience. Argo ultimately is a movie that will likely make those in the normally jaded movie business proud that what they do actually made a difference in a major world event (eventually all the other 52 Americans held hostage by radical Iranians for 444 days were released on the last day of embattled President Jimmy Carter’s term in office). That aspect could play well into heightening its Oscar chances as it rolls out for the long season.

After Toronto, this was the second time Mendez had seen the film that revolves around his novel idea to fake a movie in order to get the hostages out and when I sat down with him and his nephew at his table he told me it was even better now.” To see this kind of five minute ovation and the reaction it got here in Hollywood is remarkable but it’s stranger than strange,” he says of seeing the real movie made about his fake movie. He explained the whole operation was classified and kept top secret for nearly two decades before President Clinton declassified the info in 1997 and a Wired Magazine article let the world know about this heroic event. As for the rights to his tale, Mendez says both George Clooney and Brad Pitt were vying for it through their respective studios Warners and Paramount. “I got a call in the middle of the night and it was George Clooney on the line from Romania telling me of his interest in my story. The middle of the night. It eventually got down to people from Warner Bros and Paramount offering money. I finally said ‘double it’ and Warner Bros did,” he says adding that Clooney had originally intended to direct and play him but eventually Affleck got involved. “I was thrilled with Ben. I think he did a great job with the film.” He says the name of the fake movie came about after he kept repeating a knock-knock joke with his colleagues. “Knock Knock. Who’s there? Argo? Argo Who? Argo fuck yourself”. It’s in the real movie too.

Many of the actual hostages were also on hand including Lee Schatz who was seeing the movie for the first time. He was looking around the party for Rory Cochrane whom he had never met even though the actor plays him in the film. Schatz says it was eerie watching the film because at the time the six diplomats were ensconced in the Canadian embassy and really sheltered from what was going on outside. He said he gets to invite several friends to the Washington D.C. premiere next week and one of them will be his office desk mate who knew nothing about what really happened to him for 20 years because of the classified mission. He thinks it was wise to keep it quiet all those years because it gave the CIA the option of using this ploy again somewhere if needed. Publicizing it then would have obviously killed that option.

I told Clooney after being on the circuit last year for The Descendants I actually thought he was going to get a year off from the Oscar season madness. He just laughed. Now as producer of this sure-bet Best Picture contender he and partner Grant Heslov are back in the thick of it. He’s enormously proud of the movie and the job Affleck did.

As a producer Clooney seems as busy now as an actor. “We are shooting August Osage County in Bartelsville, Oklahoma. It’s going great. John Wells is directing,” he says of his former E.R. executive producer. They are making the film in a house the production bought there, rather than a soundstage which is normally how this kind play-turned-movie might be done. Meryl Streep and Julia Roberts are among the all-star cast and Clooney says it was tough for Wells , working with its Tony and Pulitzer Prize winning playwright Tracy Letts to condense from the play’s 3 1/2 hour running time and to “open up” as a movie. The Weinstein Company will release in 2013, likely putting yet another Clooney project back in the Oscar race next year.

Argo co-star Bryan Cranston was also there soaking up the attention for his dead-on performance as Mendez’s CIA boss. Despite having Breaking Bad and all the Emmy attention happening right as this movie was launching the busy Cranston said, ” I am just so proud of everything about this movie. I would go anywhere and do anything for it.” His daughter Taylor was with him and as a USC sophomore she is following in his footsteps getting into the acting game. She’s in a production there of the sexually-charged French classic, La Ronde but doesn’t think she wants her Dad to see this one.


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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by Katiedot on Sat 06 Oct 2012, 06:43

Great! It sounds as though George is really going to push Argo so we may see more of him than expected.

I was worried that with no film release and nothing in the awards season that he'd more or less drop off the radar.
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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by Katiedot on Tue 09 Oct 2012, 12:24

A bit more:

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Ben Affleck, Screenwriter Chris Terrio and Producer Grant Heslov Talk ARGO, George Clooney’s Input on the Production, Challenging Scenes and Oscar Buzz

by Christina Radish

Posted: October 8th, 2012 at 4:52 pm

Based on real events, Argo, from director/producer/star Ben Affleck, is a smart, edge-of-your-seat thriller that has Oscar written all over it. The film chronicles the life-or-death covert operation to rescue six Americans who escaped the U.S. Embassy in Tehran, Iran when the militants stormed the building on November 4, 1979 and took 52 American hostage. In order to fly out of the country and back to safety, they had to rely on CIA exfiltration specialist Tony Mendez (Affleck) to head the mission that required them to pose as a Canadian filmmaking team wanting to shoot a sci-fi movie in their country. The film also stars Bryan Cranston, Alan Arkin, John Goodman, Victor Garber, Tate Donovan, Clea DuVall, Scott McNairy, Rory Cochrane, Kyle Chandler and Chris Messina.

At the film’s press day, Ben Affleck, along with screenwriter Chris Terrio and producer Grant Heslov (a principal partner in Smokehouse Pictures with George Clooney), talked about how they all came to be a part of bringing this incredible story to the big screen, how much input George Clooney had on the production, the most challenging scene to shoot, Tony Mendez’s influence on the film, and the Oscar buzz that has already started. Check out what they had to say after the jump.

Question: How did you all come to be a part of bringing this story to the big screen?

GRANT HESLOV: George [Clooney] and I both read the article while we were shooting a film in North Carolina, and we thought it would make a great film. So, we brought it to the studio and we set it up, and then we had the task of trying to find a writer. Chris [Terrio] was somebody that Nina Wolarsky, who was also a producer on the film, had read the work of before and was a huge fan of his. I read something that he had written, and he came in and pitched a take, which was essentially the film, as you see it, with very little changes. Generally, screenplays suck. This was the best first draft of a screenplay that I had ever read and been involved with. Then, it was five years of trying to figure out when we could make it. That’s when Ben [Affleck] came along.

BEN AFFLECK: When I got the script, I couldn’t believe how good it was. They said, “This is our best script,” and I thought that was some executive hyping me on it, but it really was pretty incredible. I was amazed. I talked to Grant and George and said, “Look, I really want to do this. This is amazing!” And they said, “Okay, great! Let’s do it!” So, we took it to Warner Bros. And then, I went back and talked to Chris [Terrio] and said, “How did you do this?” I looked at some documentaries and read some books and thought, “God, this is really unwieldy. It felt like it should have been a 10-hour mini-series. How did you get that down into a three-act structure?”

CHRIS TERRIO: Obviously, (article writer) Josh [Bearman] was charging at the head of the army by going out and uncovering this story and putting it together. And then, when I got it, I think the only coherent thought in my head was, “What if this hadn’t been classified until 1997? What if this could have been made in 1980, by a guy like Sidney Lumet? What if it could be a verbal movie?” There’s a lot of words in it. It’s about artifice. It’s about pulling off an escapade without any military action, and without anything except storytelling and bullshitting. So, that became a big thread of the story about these parallel worlds of Hollywood and the CIA, and all these people trying to create a coherent story to get those people out. That was the spine of it. I knew that it was going to be about people trying to do their jobs and trying to get these people out by storytelling, really. Tone is something that we talked about a lot. It was about, how do you tell a story that is geo-political, where the stakes are very high and you have lives hanging in the balance, but at the same time, be able to go to the press conference at the Beverly Hilton and keep the irony and acerbic nature of some of the dialogue without compromising either tone. That was a mix. That’s something that was not only at the script stage, but throughout the process. That’s where Ben’s sense of humor, sense of timing and sense of filmmaking really was the guide. It was about saying, “How much can we get away with here? How do we get it right, and how do we make it all look like the same movie?” I don’t know how Ben pulled that off, but he did.

How much input did George Clooney have, in regard to making the film?
HESLOV: We worked on this for five or six years, before we even got to the point of talking to Ben about it. We don’t develop a lot of stuff. We don’t have 30 or 40 projects at our fingertips. We find something that we like and we say, “We’re gonna make this.” That’s pretty much the way that we’ve always done it. If you go back and read the Wired article, the tone of this film is that article. It really was on that page. That’s appealing to us, when we can find a piece that has humor, has something to say, has relevance and speaks to events that are happening, literally. We were very involved in that. He’s as involved as any producer will be, particularly when it comes to the cut. He’s really great with the cut.

AFFLECK: For me, the nice thing about working with Smokehouse, and Grant and George, is that it makes a big difference to have producers who are filmmakers and who have actually done what you’re doing. With these guys, they’ve done it really well and for a long time, and they have experience on the back-end with marketing, distribution, development and post-production, as well as being really supportive during production. So, you feel like you have a different kind of partner, who’s got an intuitive sympathy for what you’re going through. Both of these guys have done it and done it well, so it was great for me.

HESLOV: The actual shooting of the film is more difficult for George. I don’t think he wants to be a distraction on a set, and he tends to feel like he’s a distraction because people behave weird and do crazy shit when he’s there. So, the shooting is a little bit trickier.

Ben, what’s like for you to be the actor, director and producer, on set?

AFFLECK: No matter what you’re doing, if you’re trying to make a movie, you need to be working with people that are really good and who make you better. I have a lot of titles in front of my name, but the movie works as well, if not better, than anything I’ve been involved in because of the amazing cast that I put together and who were willing to do it, and Chris Terrio’s script and the partnership with the producers. I was in an incredibly enviable position, in that sense. I didn’t have to go, “Well, I’ve gotta push the rock up the hill, in all these areas.” I had a lot of partners doing it, which made all those different things better. Moreover, I don’t see them as necessarily distinct. It’s all part of filmmaking. It’s hard for me to distinguish and put each job in its silo.

What are the most important things that you’ve learned about filmmaking now?

AFFLECK: It’s been reinforced to me, and it’s a little cliche, but I’ve learned that you can’t make a movie that even works, much less that’s good, without really good writing and really good acting. That lesson has led me to not be distracted, so much, by the other stuff going on in filmmaking and to focus on the essence of a story, and the words and the events and the way that those are interpreted by the actors. That philosophy has taken me to a place that I really like.

There is no single face that you put on the antagonist of this film. How was it to approach that aspect of the story?

TERRIO: I think that’s a really astute observation. Ben and I talked about how pretty much everybody in the film is in a system. Everyone is doing their job within a system. Even the revolutionaries are in a system. So, the question becomes, “How do you do the right thing within this system?” Even for Tony, there’s this huge vampire-squid-octopus of the CIA, within which it’s easier not to do the right thing. It’s easier to say, “Fuck it, let the State Department take the blame.” Tony has to be the guy to say, “No, I am the face of this mission. I am responsible for what will happen.” In the same way, on the Iranian side, you have all these people that are caught up in the currents of history. And then, as the film goes on, the question is about how you dramatize that antagonism and those threats to really make it feel like there’s a villain and the villain is widespread, and it’s urgent to save the six from the distributed villain of whatever you want to call it.

What was the most challenging scene to shoot?

AFFLECK: When you hire great actors, you’re lucky, so you just try to create an atmosphere where they can succeed and relax and take risks. You’re happy that you get to watch them at the monitor and that your name is on the director’s chair. That was more fun than challenging, really. The most challenging thing was the big scene with all of the extras. Grant and I, and our line producer, had a long lead-up, trying to get thousands of people in Turkey to show up and there was a lot of anxiety about whether they would. And there were some issues because it was harder to get younger people. It was a student revolution, so you didn’t want it to look like a riot at the senior center. We tried to make it as real as possible, and it required a lot of people and a lot of wrangling. When you have 2,000 people, if they’re cold, they just go home.

HESLOV: Some of them had to leave from one or two in the morning from their homes, and they were bussed in from all over the place. And it got very cold and started to rain, so we did lose some of them.

TERRIO: Which, as it turned out, was exactly the weather on the day of the actual embassy take-over. In some weird way, despite creating all kinds of logistical problems, as the writer, I was thinking, “This is great!”

AFFLECK: And the writer was inside the little café with a heater.

Ben, what was it about Tony Mendez that got under your skin and made you want to play him?

AFFLECK: I wanted to play him because the script was really interesting. It struck me, right away, that you had this thriller and then, in equal measure, this comic Hollywood satire and this really intricate real-life CIA spy story based on truth. That seemed like a fantastically interesting and unusual movie to be a part of, and I really wanted to direct it. And then, the actor side of my brain that’s still in that phase of auditioning and trying to make connections and get work asked the director of that movie for a job, and the director was in a tough spot and had to say yes.

Did you get to spend any time with Tony Mendez, at all?

AFFLECK: I was on top of a run of people who had spent time with Tony. By the time I got there, Josh and the Smokehouse guys had talked to him. Chris had been to his house in Maryland. By the time I finally got to sit down with him, he was steeped in this movie. It was Tony’s story and Tony’s point of view. He wanted to meet me at this famous old CIA bar in Georgetown that he told me was where Aldrich Ames passed names of the American agents in Russia to his Russian handlers. When he told me that, it sunk in, all of a sudden, that this was real. This was a real story about a real guy who worked in a real world where real lives were at stake. It wasn’t just sliding down the roof and kicking in the window and shooting three guys, which is the kind of thing that we, in Hollywood, tend to think of as the CIA. It was a real thing, and it’s out there. These folks are making sacrifices for us, every day. It was really inspiring to meet Tony, and he participated and helped us. He has a cameo in the movie, and he was at the premiere in Toronto.

How much influence did he actually have on the story you were telling?

TERRIO: When Tony first read the script, I was terrified about some of the things we had to dramatize, that aren’t directly from his memoirs or from the reporting about him. I thought he would be really put off by it. But, speaking to the connection between espionage and Hollywood, Tony lived his whole life in a world of artifice and he understands that, in order to dramatize certain things, certain things needed to change. There would be technical things where he would call me and say, “I don’t think I would do X, Y and Z,” often involving covert communications. There was a long, tedious string of things that he had to do, before he could call Langley, for example. In a film, you have to shorthand that. You can’t wait three days, so that the message can be passed on from source to source to source. There were shortcuts like that, that we had to take for dramatic purposes. But, I think that he’s pretty happy with the way that we chose to depict him.

With the recent protests that have happened in the Middle East, was there any concern about what you depict in this film and the similarities between the two?

AFFLECK: It was always important to us that the movie not be politicized. We went to great pains to try to make it very factual and fact-based, knowing that it was going to be coming out before an election in the United States when a lot of things get politicized. We obviously couldn’t forecast how terrible things would become now, but even when we made the movie, we saw some resonance to countries that were in tumult. Naturally, we just wanted to be judicious and careful about presenting the facts, and also stand firmly behind that and say, “This is an examination of this part of the world.” Just because a part of the world is undergoing strife and tumult, it doesn’t mean you stop examining it, looking at it or talking about it. I think that would be a bad thing.

Ben, what reaction did you get from your family at home, for your character’s ‘70s look?

AFFLECK: My family unanimously hated the look, for different reasons. There was a united front. My kids kept saying, “Can you shave the prickles?,” and I said, “I’ve gotta where this for work.” Finally, my daughter was like, “What kind of work would want you to look like that?!”

How do you feel about all of the Oscar buzz for this film?

AFFLECK: Right now, we’re just trying to get the movie out. There isn’t anybody out there who has paid a dime to buy a ticket yet to see this movie. When you work for as long as we all have, on something like this, the focus is just on the audience coming to see it. Otherwise, you’re just a tree in the woods. You’ve spent all that time for a plastic disc. The goal is to have it be as large a collective experience as possible.

Argo opens in theaters on October 12th.
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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by Joanna on Tue 09 Oct 2012, 12:43

lol! "Crazy shit behaviour" says Grant.
I can well imagine...a good description Thumbs up!
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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by silly girl on Thu 11 Oct 2012, 01:09

Because this talks about the film and it's reception:


George Clooney: 'Argo' Gets Rave Reviews!


George Clooney leaves his hotel on Wednesday afternoon (October 10) in New York City.

The day before, the 51-year-old actor’s girlfriend Stacy Keibler was spotted doing some shopping around the Big Apple during the rainy day.

George‘s new movie Argo, which he served on as a lead producer, is getting some rave reviews and currently has a 92% on Rotten Tomatoes!

Entertainment Weekly gave the film an A and said “Argo is never less than wildly entertaining, but a major part of its power is that it so ominously captures the kickoff to the world we’re in now.”

Make sure to check out Argo, in theaters this weekend!

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(Looks like he is leaving town. )

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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by party animal - not! on Thu 11 Oct 2012, 01:25

Does, doesn't it? Where to now? Cabo for a birthday?

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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by amaretti on Thu 11 Oct 2012, 02:01

Great reviews . Very Happy

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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by silly girl on Thu 11 Oct 2012, 03:34

Washington DC premier of Argo:


Ben Affleck & Jennifer Garner: 'Argo' D.C. Premiere!


Ben Affleck and his wife Jennifer Garner attend the premiere of his film Argo on Wednesday (October 10) at Regal Gallery Place Stadium 14 in Washington, D.C.

The couple were joined by the 40-year-old actor’s co-stars John Goodman and Bryan Cranston.

Earlier in the day, Jennifer attended the America’s Report Card 2012: Children in the U.S. event at Russell Senate Office Building as an ambassador for Save the Children.

“The number of Americans living in poverty remains at a historic high, with nearly one in four children knowing all too well what it means to go without,” Jennifer said.

“Childhood poverty sets children up for failure in school, impacts their health, and can predetermine the course of their lives,” she added. “So why, then, are children being left out of the conversation during an election season in which the economy is the primary issue? We need to do better for our kids.”

FYI: Jennifer is wearing a Roberto Cavalli gown at the premiere.

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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by Joanna on Thu 11 Oct 2012, 11:40

I love seeing George dressed like that in his casuals.
Much prefer that to him being all dressed up in a tux !
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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by Katiedot on Sun 21 Oct 2012, 18:46

More good news for Argo:

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Meanwhile, Ben Affleck’s Oscar-buzzed Argo had a spectacular hold from its opening a week ago. “Friday night’s -14% hold is the best for a wide release R-rated film that I can recall,” a Warner Bros exec crowed. “Word of mouth has taken over the campaign. All good news as the awards season approaches.”

Here’s the Top Ten based on weekend estimates:

1. Paranormal Activity 4 (Paramount) NEW [3,412 Runs] R
Friday $15.0M, Saturday $9.3M, Weekend $30.0M

2. Argo (Warner Bros) Week 2 [3,247 Runs] R
Friday $5.0M (-14%), Saturday $7.3M, Weekend $16.7M, Cume $43.3M

3. Taken 2 (Fox) Week 3 [3,489 Runs] PG13
Friday $4.2M, Saturday $5.9M, Weekend $13.3M, Cume $106.0M

4. Hotel Transylvania (Sony) Week 4 [3,384 Runs] PG
Friday $3.6M, Saturday $5.8M, Weekend $13.2M, Cume $118.7M

4. Alex Cross (Summit/Lionsgate) NEW [2,539 Runs] PG13
Friday $4.0M, Saturday $4.8M, Weekend $12.0M
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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by amaretti on Sun 21 Oct 2012, 21:41

Mama mia . Good news for Ben and good news for the Industry . Very Happy

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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by laetval on Sun 28 Oct 2012, 19:38

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This video was made by Natasha Sarraf. She interviewed the extras of the movie Argo
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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by melbert on Sun 28 Oct 2012, 19:46

Interesting! Thanks Laetval!
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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by traone on Mon 29 Oct 2012, 18:09

I just now clicked on the video to view it, and it says it's private. I couldn't watch it. Can anyone help, please? Thanks.
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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by Joanna on Mon 29 Oct 2012, 18:40

Yes the same for me traone. Maybe unavailable outside
of USA ?
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Re: Clooney in Canadian Caper / 'Argo' / Escape from Tehran

Post by melbert on Tue 30 Oct 2012, 01:00

I watched it yesterday, but it says private for me now too.
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