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Zero Dark Thirty's CIA access to be investigated by US Senate

Zero Dark Thirty

Story by Jack Foley

THE US Senate Intelligence Committee is reportedly investigating how much access the makers of Osama bin Laden movie Zero Dark Thirty were given to the CIA.

As the controversy surrounding the dramatized account of the hunt for Osama Bin Laden intensifies, investigators are now examining whether the spy agency gave the filmmakers – including Oscar-tipped director Kathryn Bigelow – “inappropriate” access to secret material.

The film is in hot water with three US senators, who have accused the film of being inacurrate in its depiction of the use of torture in the hunt for Osama Bin Laden.

And it has prompted the acting director of the CIA to post an open letter on the agency website confirming, among other things, that the film was “not a realistic portrayal of the facts”. Read more

According to reports issued by both The Hollywood Reporter and Reuters, the Committee had begun to look at the records charting how much contact was made between intelligence officials, Bigelow and her screenwriter, Mark Boal.

Reuters added that the committee will also try to ascertain “whether CIA personnel are responsible for the portrayal of harsh interrogation practices, and in particular the suggestion that they were effective”.

Sony Pictures, which is distributing the movie in the US, has told the BBC that it remains proud of the film, describing it as “an extraordinary motion picture”.

While Bigelow and Boal have also put out a statement insisting that the film depicts “a variety of controversial practices and intelligence methods” and adding: “The film shows that no single method was necessarily responsible for solving the manhunt, nor can any single scene taken in isolation fairly capture the totality of efforts the film dramatizes.”

Zero Dark Thirty opens in UK cinemas on January 25, 2013.

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