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Ben Affleck To Pull A ‘Blue Valentine,’ Will Make Cast Of ‘Argo’ Live Like Hostages For Two Weeks

Ben Affleck To Pull A 'Blue Valentine,' Will Make Cast Of 'Argo' Live Like Hostages For Two Weeks

The story goes something like this: Derek Cianfrance had Ryan Gosling and Michelle Williams live together — buy groceries, pay bills etc — during the shoot of “Blue Valentine,” filming all the “in love” stuff first before taking a quick break, and then lensing all the heartbreak after. The results speak for themselves. Whether or not Ben Affleck saw the film we don’t know, but he’s taking the same sort of approach for his upcoming hostage thriller “Argo.”

Vulture reports that Affleck plans to have his as-yet-undetermined cast 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. 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. It’s actually a pretty incredible story and the Wired article it’s based on, “How the CIA Used a Fake Sci-Fi Flick to Rescue Americans from Tehran” is pretty much a must-read.

So far, only Alan Arkin has signed on but the rest of the cast is likely to be coming soon for the film that should be going in front of cameras any day now. It’s said that “Argo” will be lighter in tone than “The Town” or “Gone Baby Gone” and certainly, the lengths the CIA go to fool Iranian authorities that their agents are actually filmmakers is pretty hilarious and extraordinary, but as this latest bit of info shows, gritty realism won’t be far behind either.

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“The results speak for themselves.”

Not really. As Lisa Simpson would say, “That’s specious reasoning…”

Method stories like that always sound good, but it’s funny how little difference it probably made. There are plenty of films that have nailed “realism” as or more convincingly in which the stars rode around in limos and never talked outside the set. Or gritty indie films where the actors dropped by after work over months and years with little to no prep (or even emotional investment).

I mean, while I liked the film, I actually though Gosling’s performance was the opposite of real and lived in — it was hammy and borderline SNL at times (trucker glasses, bad accent). Williams did a really fine job…but she’s done that in just about everything — whether it’s a big Hollywood production or gritty indie project.


but yeah, Ben Affleck totally saw Blue Valentine and got the idea for that. I follow you.


Directors of war films have been putting their cast members through “boot camp” for aeons.

Kevin Jagernauth

Guys, I’m using a recent example as a comparison point. Obviously.


FYI, this might be hard for you to believe, but method acting and preparation wasn’t invented by the director of “Blue Valentine.”


Only the Playlist can make the first paragraph of an article about Ben Affleck’s Argo” about Ryan Gosling and “Blue Valentine.”


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