The Embassy of Canada was ground zero for spooks, State Department officials and some of the best actors in Hollywood, Ben Affleck, John Goodman, Bryan Cranston and even Jennifer Garner. Time Warner’s Carol Melton along with the Canadian Ambassador welcomed the star-studded crowd that included Robert Anders, a consular officer at the U.S. embassy 33 years ago, who along with 5 American Embassy colleagues hid at the Canadian Ambassador’s Tehran residence until they could be slipped out of Tehran after the Embassy was overtaken.
Tony Mendez, the CIA agent who created an almost laughable but effective path to sneak the six Americans out of the country, received a big welcome from Ben Affleck. Mr. Affleck spoke with pride about the joy of bringing this almost unknown great chapter in American Canadian cooperation to life. He introduced CIA Director General David Petraeus and his wife Holly, saying he was “honored to be in the room with him.”
Actor Bryan Cranston was overheard taping a video greeting to the Petraeus’s daughter who could not attend the event.
Guests included the State Department’s Huma Abedin and husband, former Congressman Anthony Weiner who pointed out Huma got a screen credit in the film. CIA General Counsel Stephen Preston, NYT’s Maureen Dowd, PBS’s Gwen Ifill and Lisa Davis, Investigative reporter Mark Hosenball and AP’s Kimberly Dozier were part of the packed house. Media favorites Men’s Health’s Marc Adelman, the Washington Post’s Amy Argetsinger, RNC flack Sean Spicer, Senator Boxer’s Laura Schiller, CNN’s Joe Johns and Sam Feist sipped water and ate up the popcorn and the story of a successful American CIA mission. Part of the film was shot at the State Department and the actors visited CIA headquarters.