The political thriller Argo is mopping up an impressive number of awards and critical acclaim, but what does the former president, in office during the Iran hostage crisis that the film is based on, think of it?
Jimmy Carter sat down with Piers Morgan on CNN to discuss Argo and the Iran hostage crisis. Morgan wanted to get Carter’s perspective on the film’s depiction of events that partially defined his presidency, specifically asking whether or not Carter considers the film an accurate portrayal.
Carter began by gushing on Argo, saying that it was “a great drama” and noting “I hope it wins the award for best film,” but then said that he considered the film to be inaccurate, and that Canada deserves more credit for the events depicted in the film.
He said that “90 percent of the contributions to the ideas and the consummation of the plan was Canadian,” even though Argo is a CIA drama. Carter continued: “the main hero, in my opinion, was Ken Taylor [portrayed in Argo by Victor Garber], who was the Canadian ambassador who orchestrated the entire process.”
Carter isn’t alone in this opinion. A review in Macleans noted that “the movie rewrites history at Canada’s expense, making Hollywood and the CIA the saga’s heroic saviours while Taylor is demoted to a kindly concierge.”
The real Ken Taylor also chimed in on the issue, but didn’t seem as perturbed by Canada’s second-fiddle role in Argo as others (despite his real-life central role during the crisis). “In reality, Canada was responsible for the six and the CIA was a junior partner. But I realize this is a movie and you have to keep the audience on the edge of their seats,” he said.
Here’s Jimmy Carter sort-of giving Argo the best picture nod: