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Military vs. Tinseltown

by Ashley Grashaw
Jul 10, 2008

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Ashley Grashaw

Hollywood has made no shortage of movies about the war in Iraq over the past couple of years. We've seen apolitical films about 9/11 and its aftermath, like United 93 and World Trade Center, as well as more overtly political films about service in the military, like In the Valley of Elah and Redacted. Ever wonder how accurate and authentic these films really are? Enter Lt. Col. Todd Breasseale. He's the Army's liaison to Hollywood* — he helps decide which movies should get Army help, such as access to bases and equipment,... and which shouldn't. And that's where the conflict lies. Fingers fly every which way... Censorship! Spin! Bias! Pentagon correspondent for the LA Times, Julian Barnes, parses it out in an article titled, "The Iraq war movie: Military hopes to shape genre." Breasseale and Barnes join us to give us an inside look at how war movies get made. We'll also talk to film critic Christopher Orr about why most Iraq war movies tank at the box office (ahem, Lions for Lambs).

* I want that job.

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