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Iran calls "Argo" propaganda, will film its own "Argo"
Tuesday, 15 January 2013

Affleck’s Argo, a thriller set against the backdrop the 1979 Iranian hostage crisis, won best director and best dramatic film at this year's Golden Globes but has been widely criticised in Iran.

Just as Affleck was snubbed at the Oscars for a best director nomination, Iran announced it would be producing its own version of events.

Iranian actor and film maker Ataollah Salmanian said: "The draft of the movie, Setad Moshtarak, [The General Staff], has been approved by [Iran's] art centre and it awaits a budget to start shooting.

"The movie is about 20 American hostages who were handed over to the US embassy by Iranian revolutionaries at the beginning of the revolution. This movie... can be an appropriate response to distorted movies such as Argo.”

On November 4, 1979 Iranian Islamist Students stormed the US embassy in Tehran and took American diplomats hostage, holding them over a period of 444 days which ruptured diplomatic ties between Washington and Tehran.

In his film, Affleck plays a CIA agent who extracts six US diplomats from the residence of a Canadian ambassador.

The film has been accused of major historical inaccuracies outside of Iran notably for its exaggeration of the role of the CIA at the expense of Canadian diplomats in Tehran at the time who were the actual heroes.

Argo has been banned in Iran but pirated copies are being circulated in the country.

Iranian media dismissed the film's success and criticised the Golden Globes as being nothing else than a "political ceremony."

The Iranian paper Hafte Sobh has said that “Argo is a sign of Ben Affleck's attempt to recreate Tehran in 1980. While his attempt might be ridiculous for Iranians, it has delighted Americans."

 


  

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