TVNewser FishbowlDC AgencySpy TVSpy LostRemote PRNewser SocialTimes AllFacebook 10,000 Words GalleyCat UnBeige MediaJobsDaily

Argo’s 1980 Full-Page Variety Ad

Earlier this week, Ted Koppel told The Hollywood Reporter the only time he ever killed a legitimate news story during his illustrious career was when he chose not to report about the half-dozen Americans hiding out at the Canadian embassy in Tehran. Now comes a reminder of some even more explicit  Argo media subterfuge.

Variety film reporter Jeff Sneider notes that on January 15, 1980, his publication shared a paragraph about the fictitious movie as if it were a real project:

Variety published the following news brief in its Pix, People, Pickups roundup: “Studio Six Prods. has announced that sci-fi thriller, ‘Argo,’ will begin filming in March on various locations in Asia and Europe. Indie is keeping mum on any plot and cast details until just before pic is released.”

The following day, Variety ran a full-page ad (pictured) touting a spring Argo production start date.  This is certainly not the only instance of a “go” project heralded in the trades failing to see the light of day. But Argo is likely the only time the talent agency of record was CIA.

Previously on FishbowlLA:
Ben Affleck’s Nod to Washington Post Editor Ben Bradlee

Mediabistro Course

Overcoming Writer's Block

Overcoming Writer's BlockUse proven tools and exercises to get back to writing! Starting July 15, learn a process that will help you pinpoint your optimal writing conditions, structure your time and build a framework to increase your productivity. Register now!