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‘We only show the CIA killing nasty agents’ – Michael Winner

While I have written about 1973 thriller Scorpio before, documents made available on the CIA CREST database shed new light on this, the first movie to film at Langley.  The CIA were not just spying on media coverage of the film as it developed but also had assets within the ...
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The CIA and Hollywood – Tom and Pearse on Black Op Radio

Pearse and I were recently invited onto Black Op Radio with Len Osanic to talk about The CIA and Hollywood.  We mostly discussed Ed Lansdale's involvement in The Quiet American (1958), which butchered the original book in part as a result of Lansdale's influence on writer/director Joseph Mankiewicz.  We also ...
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‘Well Dressed Negroes’ and ‘Dignified Natives’ – How Luigi Luraschi Rewrote Movies for the CIA

In 1953, in the early weeks of the Eisenhower administration, the CIA conducted an operation to alter the content of Hollywood films to help promote positive images of America to foreign audiences.  A series of letters addressed to a CIA officer named 'Owen' were written by an executive at Paramount ...
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ClandesTime 101 – Nightcrawler

Nightcrawler is one of those rare films that is beautifully written, very well executed and is about something that actually matters.  It tells the story of Lou Bloom, a young man in poverty-struck Los Angeles who gets into nightcrawling - filming violent crimes and accidents and selling the footage to ...
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‘No Overt Recognition of the Force as Marines’ – Marine Corps folder on assistance to Die Another Day

Die Another Day is widely considered to be one of the worst James Bond films ever made.  It's the one with the invisible car in the ice cave and Halle Berry.  The production got limited supported from the US Marine Corps, who recently released a short folder to me from ...
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ClandesTime 100 – Sex, Violence and Censorship

Why do we censor films?  Intuitively we all know the answer to this question - because there are some things we don't want to see on the screen.  In this episode we examine film censorship, focusing primarily on the treatment of cinematic violence by the MPAA and BBFC.  Using Walter ...
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NSA emails on Enemy of the State

Paranoid thriller Enemy of the State provoked such a reaction within the NSA that they instigated a large PR campaign to counter public perceptions of a surveillance agency running wild.  NSA emails show that even while the movie was being made, agency employees were unhappy about the producers filming from ...
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‘Would Only Encourage Snickers and Derision’ – CIA Review of Screenplay for The CIA

In 1969 the CIA obtained a copy of The CIA, a screenplay being developed at Universal Studios, written by William Woodfield and Allan Balter.  Woodfield and Balter were perhaps best known for writing the TV series of Mission: Impossible, until they had a well-publicised falling out with series creator Bruce ...
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Subscriber Podcast #4 – The Spy Novel that Predicted Trump

The Twentieth Day in January was published in 1980 and tells the story of an MI6 officer discovering that the Russian government is blackmailing the incoming president. In this subscriber-only podcast we take a look at the book and dwell a little on its implications, and I offer my views ...
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Exercises and False Flag Terror – Tom Secker on The Mind Renewed

Julian of The Mind Renewed invited me back onto his show to discuss the link between false flag terrorism and training exercises.  While this is usually talked about in a very simplistic and historically ignorant way, the method of using a drill or training exercise to cover for a black ...
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