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Ben Affleck’s “Argo” Wows at Toronto Film Festival

Warner Bros. showcased one of its biggest fall films, the feel-good thriller “Argo,” during the Toronto International Film Festival’s opening days, proving an across-the-board hit with audiences.

“Argo,” actor-director Ben Affleck’s take on a CIA mission to rescue six Americans from the 1979 Iran hostage crisis under the guise of a movie shoot, generated a standing ovation Friday night, Sept. 7 from the audience at Roy Thomson Hall. On hand were Alan Arkin, John Goodman, Victor Garber, Bryan Cranston and Tate Donovan, plus Affleck’s wife Jennifer Garner and sometime collaborator Matt Damon.

“Argo” premiered, aptly, on the same day the Canadian government closed its embassy in Tehran. The film depicts a little known incident wherein the CIA and the Canadian embassy helped six Americans escape Tehran during the Iranian hostage crisis.

Based on true events, “Argo” chronicles the life-or-death covert operation to rescue six Americans, which unfolded behind the scenes of the Iran hostage crisis—the truth of which was unknown by the public for decades.

Academy Award® winner Ben Affleck (“The Town,” “Good Will Hunting”) directs and stars in the film, which is being produced by Academy Award® winner George Clooney (“Syriana”), Oscar® nominee Grant Heslov (“Good Night, and Good Luck.”) and Affleck.

On November 4, 1979, as the Iranian revolution reaches its boiling point, militants storm the U.S. embassy in Tehran, taking 52 Americans hostage. But, in the midst of the chaos, six Americans manage to slip away and find refuge in the home of the Canadian ambassador. Knowing it is only a matter of time before the six are found out and likely killed, a CIA “exfiltration” specialist named Tony Mendez (Affleck) comes up with a risky plan to get them safely out of the country. A plan so incredible, it could only happen in the movies.

“Argo” also stars Oscar® winner Alan Arkin (“Little Miss Sunshine”), Bryan Cranston (TV’s “Breaking Bad”) and John Goodman (“You Don’t Know Jack”). The main cast also includes Kerry Bishé, Kyle Chandler, Rory Cochrane, Christopher Denham, Tate Donovan, Clea DuVall, Victor Garber, Zeljko Ivanek, Richard Kind, Scoot McNairy, Chris Messina, Michael Parks, and Taylor Schilling.

Affleck is directing the film from a screenplay by Chris Terrio, based on a selection from Master in Disguise by Antonio Mendez. David Klawans, Chris Brigham, Graham King, Tim Headington, Chay Carter and Nina Wolarsky are serving as executive producers.

(Opening across the Philippines this October, “Argo” is distributed worldwide by Warner Bros. Pictures, a Warner Bros. Entertainment Company.)

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