Is Argo a True Story? Is the 2012 Movie Based on Real Life?

‘Argo' is a 2012 thriller film directed by Ben Affleck that follows the daring CIA mission of rescuing six American diplomats from Tehran, Iraq, throughout a hostage disaster. CIA exfiltration specialist Tony Mendez (Affleck) formulates a plan to pose as a Hollywood movie manufacturing crew to execute the mission. The enthralling movie is crammed with excessive stakes and makes quite a few references to the real-world situation in Iran throughout the late Seventies. Due to this fact, viewers have to be curious to seek out out whether or not the Academy Award-winning movie relies on any actual occasions or true tales. In that case, Right here is the whole lot you should know concerning the inspiration behind ‘Argo.'

Is Argo Based mostly on a True Story?

Sure, ‘Argo' relies on a real story. The movie relies on the real-life CIA mission dubbed the “Canadian Caper,” a joint covert operation between the CIA and the Canadian Authorities performed in 1979. Varied characters within the movie, together with Antonio “Tony” Mendez, are based mostly on real-life figures who had been part of the mission. Mendez's memoir titled ‘The Grasp of Disguise: My Secret Life within the CIA' and the article ‘The Great Escape: How the CIA Used a Fake Sci-Fi Flick to Rescue Americans from Tehran‘ by Joshuah Bearman served as the first supply supplies referenced by movie's screenwriter Chris Terrio.

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Picture Credit score: ABC Information/YouTube

As depicted within the movie, in 1979, a militarized Iranian group of scholars held 52 US diplomats hostage in what's now often known as the Iran hostage disaster. Nonetheless, six diplomats — Robert Anders, Cora Amburn-Lijek, Mark Lijek, Joseph Stafford, Kathleen Stafford, and Lee Schatz — managed to evade seize and had been housed by Canadian diplomats Ken Taylor and John Sheardown. The CIA and the Canadian Authorities formulated a plan to rescue the diplomats from Iran.

CIA and exfiltration professional Tony Mendez got here up with the thought of getting the six diplomats faux to be members of a movie crew scouting places in Tehran. Mendez labored with Hollywood make-up artist John Chambers to make a plausible cowl story. They fashioned a faux movie manufacturing firm with a functioning workplace often known as Studio Six Productions. They used an unproduced screenplay based mostly on Roger Zelazny's science fiction novel ‘Lord of Gentle' and even ran -page adverts in newspapers to make the manufacturing look official.

Though the movie adaptation is rooted in actuality, it additionally dramatizes sure occasions and makes a number of notable adjustments to the supply materials. For instance, one of many main criticisms towards the movie is that it understates the position of the Canadian Authorities within the mission and the efforts of Ken Taylor and John Sheardown.

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Likewise, the movie's pulsating climax that sees the mission being known as off an evening earlier than the diplomats are purported to fly out, the last-minute ticket approval, and the safety maintain up are all fictional parts. In actuality, the ultimate stage of the mission went by way of virtually seamlessly, with solely minor inconveniences brought on by a mechanical drawback with the airplane.

Amongst different notable variations between the true story and the movie is the presence of the character Lester Siegel. The character just isn't based mostly immediately on any single real-life determine however is a composite of a number of completely different individuals. Nonetheless, actor Alan Arkin who essays the position, has said that he modeled his efficiency after Jack Warner, the previous President of Warner Bros. Studios. Furthermore, the scenes depicting Tony and the six diplomats being compelled to fulfill with two individuals from the Iranian movie workplace are additionally fictional. One other notable distinction between the movie and actuality is that, in contrast to the movie, Mendez didn't meet the six diplomats by himself, and never all of them had been housed collectively.

All issues mentioned, ‘Argo' relies on a riveting true story that showcases the grit and dedication of Tony Mendez and numerous others who labored to deliver dwelling the six diplomats. Though the premise itself is fairly unbelievable, the movie is an instance of how actuality can at occasions be stranger than fiction. It's also vital to notice that the movie is a closely dramatized retelling of precise occasions, and a few elements needs to be taken with a grain of salt.

Learn Extra: Finest Films Like Argo

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