In March 1967 the makers of The Thomas Crown Affair contacted the FBI looking for permission to film their Boston office. The Bureau reviewed the script and concluded that this tale of an affair between a female investigator working with the FBI and a male millionaire bank robber was ‘an outrageous portrayal of the FBI’ and refused to co-operate with the production. Of course, the FBI didn’t actually employ female agents until the early 70s, so this film was far beyond their ultra-conservative tastes.
This is how Steve McQueen’s FBI file starts, and it goes on to detail death threats made against him, including one written in absurdly childish handwriting, and that the FBI monitored how McQueen was one of dozens of Hollywood celebrities who attended a Civil Rights march in Washington in August 1963. Numerous memos attest that the FBI had ‘no pertinent derogatory information’ about McQueen, and yet the file remained open for well over a decade.