Movie star, actor, director Ben Affleck will spend the weekend in McLean directing and starring in a new film based on a CIA mission during the takeover of the American Embassy in Tehran in 1979.
After wrapping up a day of filming on Spring Vale Avenue in West McLean Friday at dusk, Affleck said, "I love McLean.The people are very hospitable." He was nearly unrecognizable in a full black beard.
After the last shot, the Oscar winner waded into a crowd of waiting fans --- mostly teenage girls--- and smiled and joked through a series of photographs and autographs.
Affleck and his large film crew which travels in about dozen large trucks arrived on Spring Vale Avenue about 6 am and left at dusk. The neighbors knew they were coming.
Bernice Kaufman, who lives across Spring Vale from the house where the filming occurred, said the film company kept the neighbors well-informed about when they were coming and what they were doing.
"They were very courteous so the neighbors," she said.
What's it like having Hollywood on your doorstep all day? "It been fun. It's been very exciting to watch," she said. "They brought in a lot of period cars."
According to the website Collider: 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.
"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 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," Collider said.
Affleck plays Mendez. Taylor Schilling plays his wife. Bernice Kaufman said they hosted Schilling Friday morning as their house became sort of a "Green Room" for the actors.
"They all liked our dog," said Roger Kaufman referring to Devi, a Papillon, who is truly cute as a button.
The movie has big name stars and backers according to Collider: “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, and Michael Parks," Collider reported.
Actor George Clooney is the producer, Collider reported.The movie is scheduled to open September 2012.
The filming moves to the CIA today. Sunday they'll be in downtown McLean. Then the Hollywood pixie dust vanishes.