Directing isn’t easy. It’s a lot of little decisions and delegating jobs to other people who you hope can execute the vision you have in mind down to the last detail. It’s communicating with actors and crew and hoping that you can bring everybody together under one unified, specific goal and sometimes, you just have to take on a little more to get the job done right.
With that in mind, Variety reports that Ben Affleck has cast himself in the lead of his next directorial effort, “Argo.” The film is based on the true story about a C.I.A. plan to rescue a group of diplomats from Tehran after the 1979 Iranian revolution by claiming that they were part of a Hollywood movie crew shooting a film in the country. Alan Arkin is on board to play Lester Siegel, a former O.S.S. spy, now a movie producer, described as “equal parts bookie and rabbi,” who helps get the fake movie rolling, with John Goodman playing the Oscar-winning “Planet of the Apes” makeup artist John Chambers who is brought in on the elaborate scheme. As for Affleck, he’ll take the central role of Tony Mendez, the CIA exfiltration expert who gets the whole scheme up and running.
Affleck previously directed himself in the heist pic “The Town” and seems to listen very well to his own instructions. Still no start date just yet, but it looks like it will be imminent with casting continuing to move along steadily. Though the film will be lighter in tone than “The Town” or “Gone Baby Gone”—the fake movie stuff should be pretty amusing—it will also have a strong dose of realism too, as Affleck plans to have the actors who will play hostages live together in a “safe house” for two weeks prior to the start of filming so they can become acquainted with what their real life counterparts went through. No release date yet, but an Oscar season 2012 bow seems inevitable.