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All content tagged: USMC

Spy Culture - 2020-04-19 - Original post - cached version

From the WTF? files comes something I missed when it actually happened but was made aware of by the latest...

Spy Culture - 2020-03-28 - Original post - cached version

MegaForce has to be one of the dumbest movies the Pentagon has ever supported but hidden until now is the...

Spy Culture - 2020-02-20 - Original post - cached version

In 1988, several years prior to the highly successful JAG TV show, DOD representatives met with writers and producers to...

Spy Culture - 2019-12-02 - Original post - cached version

Under Siege is by far the second best Steven Seagal movie, but untold until now is the story of how...

Spy Culture - 2019-11-04 - Original post - cached version

A recent report in Newsweek’s NewsGeek section has drawn attention to how video games, just like other forms of entertainment,...

Spy Culture - 2019-10-24 - Original post - cached version

In March 1991 the producers of Hot Shots! An Important Movie contacted the US Marine Corps looking to film one...

Spy Culture - 2019-09-23 - Original post - cached version

The US military’s attempts to duplicate action movie technology took another leap recently as the Guardian XO robotic exoskeleton was...

Spy Culture - 2019-09-18 - Original post - cached version

The role of the technical advisor is crucial to understanding the military-Hollywood relationship, but very few people know who these...

Spy Culture - 2019-08-09 - Original post - cached version

I recently joined Henri from the Fortress on a Hill podcast for our latest discussion on military movies. We talked...

Spy Culture - 2019-07-28 - Original post - cached version

The relationship between government liaison offices and the entertainment industry usually works well, resulting in added production value for the...

Spy Culture - 2019-07-24 - Original post - cached version

The US military’s negotiations on the 1980s Clint Eastwood vehicle Heartbreak Ridge were protracted and complex, resulting in numerous changes...

Spy Culture - 2019-07-21 - Original post - cached version

NCIS is a wildly successful TV drama, one of the most popular series of the last 20 years. This week...

Spy Culture - 2019-07-10 - Original post - cached version

The Pentagon’s Film Office file on Heartbreak Ridge is one of the more lengthy and interesting sets of documents.  It...

Spy Culture - 2019-06-21 - Original post - cached version

The Pentagon recently released the Production Assistance Agreement they signed with the producers of Top Gun: Maverick.  It details the...

Spy Culture - 2019-06-19 - Original post - cached version

The PRISM Awards are an entertainment industry ceremony that gives out gongs for accurate depictions of substance abuse and mental...

Spy Culture - 2019-06-09 - Original post - cached version

Fields of Fire is one of the greatest movies that was never made. A brutal but sympathetic portrait of the...

Spy Culture - 2019-06-07 - Original post - cached version

When James Webb approached the Pentagon to ask for assistance making his Vietnam war drama Fields of Fire he had...

Spy Culture - 2019-06-06 - Original post - cached version

The DOD’s directive on working with Hollywood says that they can provide production assistance if it is deemed ‘in the...

Spy Culture - 2019-06-03 - Original post - cached version

When the producers of Clear and Present Danger approached the Pentagon to ask for military support they probably weren’t expecting...

Spy Culture - 2019-06-02 - Original post - cached version

1994’s Clear and Present Danger is one of the most important movies in the cinema of the war on drugs,...

Spy Culture - 2019-05-08 - Original post - cached version

The 2005 biographical war film Jarhead is one of a very small number of films set in the first Gulf...

Spy Culture - 2019-03-22 - Original post - cached version

The US military, particularly the Air Force, invested a lot of time and resources in helping make Captain Marvel, and...

Spy Culture - 2019-01-23 - Original post - cached version

The DOD claim that they only rewrite Hollywood scripts in order to ensure accuracy and to inform the public about...

Spy Culture - 2018-12-26 - Original post - cached version
One of the Pentagon's consistent bugbears when it comes to movie scripts is swearing. Whether it is from the mouths of military or civilian characters, the DOD doesn't like those ████ing cuss words. But why not? Given their various political and PR concerns why is bad language such a problem?...
Spy Culture - 2018-12-11 - Original post - cached version
While some senior military officials have spoken openly about the possibility of a war between the US and China, the entertainment liaison offices appear to be working to ensure that doesn't happen. Perhaps surprisingly, they have refused to support films, TV shows and video games where China is...
Spy Culture - 2018-11-11 - Original post - cached version
Hollywood doesn’t make war films any more. This isn’t entirely true, but compared to the post-WW2 period there are a lot less war films being made today. In this in-depth episode I offer a brief history of war movies and anti-war movies, and how the Pentagon’s policy on supporting films depicting...
Spy Culture - 2018-11-06 - Original post - cached version
The Vietnam war had a huge impact.  3 million dead Vietnamese, tens of thousands of dead Americans, and millions more on both sides suffering from trauma, depression and drug and alcohol addiction.  It also had a major influence on the US public’s willingness to engage in full-scale wars (at least...
Spy Culture - 2018-09-23 - Original post - cached version
Most government agencies sign contracts with Hollywood producers when they agree to provide support on a film or TV show. These are called Production Assistance Agreements, and set out the legal terms of the partnership between the government and the production company. In this episode I explore...
Spy Culture - 2018-09-22 - Original post - cached version
Going back through some documents released by the Army on the Transformers films I noticed that some of the notes weren't script notes from pre-production, but were production notes from while Transformers: Dark of the Moon was filming. They show that sometimes the Pentagon continues to rewrite...
Spy Culture - 2018-09-07 - Original post - cached version
The US military has a drinking problem, but like most of its problems it's OK because the entertainment liaison offices are there to make sure Hollywood doesn't draw attention to it. From episodes of Wonder Woman through to blockbuster films, scenes of services members drinking have been edited...
Spy Culture - 2018-08-26 - Original post - cached version
The military legal drama Rules of Engagement is perhaps the greatest modern example of racist, warmongering propaganda. Unsurprisingly, it benefited from full Pentagon support, in exchange for numerous script changes. The film was eerily prescient, foreshadowing two terrorist attacks in Yemen, and...
Spy Culture - 2018-08-23 - Original post - cached version
Rules of Engagement is notable for being possibly the most violent, racist, colonialist film Hollywood has made since the end of the Cold War.  It pre-empted two real life terrorist attacks in Yemen including one on the US embassy.  The film was produced with close co-operation from the DOD,...
Spy Culture - 2018-01-07 - Original post - cached version
The Science and Entertainment Exchange (or SEEX) has consulted on over 1300 films and TV shows in less than 10 years, but outside of Hollywood few people know who they are and what they do. This week we pull back the curtain to look at their activities and their agenda. Are they merely concerned...
Spy Culture - 2018-01-03 - Original post - cached version
Officially, the Science and Entertainment Exchange (or SEEX) is the outreach program of the National Academy of Sciences – a non-governmental, non-partisan, non-profit honorific body who give awards and the like.  In reality it is a government-funded entertainment liaison office who work closely...
Spy Culture - 2017-12-10 - Original post - cached version
Lone Survivor is one of very few recent DOD-supported films that is based on real events from the war on terror.  In a period where the Pentagon is more interested in Transformers and superhero movies, Lone Survivor is an exception.  Reports from the military Hollywood offices called it ‘a two...
Spy Culture - 2017-07-09 - Original post - cached version
In this month’s subscriber-only podcast I talk about some of my recent FOIA escapades, including my attempts to track down the 2nd Pentagon-Hollywood database.  The existence of this second database was revealed to me by the Marine Corps communications office, but both the Marine Corps and the...
Spy Culture - 2017-07-02 - Original post - cached version

National Security Cinema is a new book that uses over 4,000 pages of documents to reveal government censorship and propaganda in Hollywood. From the Pentagon's rewriting of James Bond to the CIA's manipulation of Meet the Parents this is the biggest and best book ever written about military-...

Spy Culture - 2017-04-30 - Original post - cached version

In this month's subscriber-only podcast I look at the notion that Hollywood is a liberal propaganda machine supported by the government. Looking through the reports of the Pentagon's Entertainment Liaison Offices I find examples where a socially and politically conservative agenda, not a...

Spy Culture - 2017-04-27 - Original post - cached version

2002's The Sum of All Fears was the fourth major film adaptation of Tom Clancy's spy novels and perhaps the most visually spectacular. The part where terrorists nuke the Super Bowl, destroying Baltimore in the process, is one of the best nuking-a-city scenes ever committed to film. Recently...

Spy Culture - 2017-04-25 - Original post - cached version

In early 2009 independent film makers Jon Stevens and Frank Jones approached the US Marine Corps entertainment liaison office with a request to review their comedy script Beverly Hills Marine, set during Operation Desert Storm. In response to a FOIA request the USMC provided me a copy of the...

Spy Culture - 2017-04-05 - Original post - cached version

Goldeneye is possibly the best of the Pierce Brosnan James Bond films, but like two others in the Brosnan period it relied on US military support. This entailed the Pentagon reviewing the script and demanding two changes - one political, one promotional - in exchange for helping to shoot one...

Spy Culture - 2017-02-18 - Original post - cached version

Die Another Day is widely considered to be one of the worst James Bond films ever made. It's the one with the invisible car in the ice cave and Halle Berry. The production got limited supported from the US Marine Corps, who recently released a short folder to me from their entertainment...

Spy Culture - 2017-01-15 - Original post - cached version

Sterling Hayden's life encompassed many important events and periods of the 20th century. A lifelong seaman he joined the Marine Corps and the OSS during World War 2, running smuggling operations to support anti-fascist partisans in Yugoslavia. He was also a movie star, famously appearing in...

Spy Culture - 2016-12-11 - Original post - cached version
The Department of Defense is the government agency with the largest and most influential operations in Hollywood. But to how many films have they provided production assistance? How many movies have they supported? In this episode we explore the answer to this question, why it is so difficult to...
Spy Culture - 2016-11-30 - Original post - cached version

Despite only producing 4 films so far the Transformers series is already one of the top 10 movie series of all time. In a paradox that encapsulates much of Hollywood, it appears that the worse the Transformers films get the better they do at the box office. These production assistance...

Spy Culture - 2016-11-23 - Original post - cached version

Sometimes the Freedom of Information Act is a strange beast and you receive something you didn't ask for, but are still happy to get. That happened to me recently when in response to a request about the Pentagon's Hollywood database I received an updated list of DOD Films - movies that were...

Aletho News - 2016-08-05 - Original post - cached version

© Flickr/ Michael Lusk Sputnik – 05.08.2016 Several Northern Mariana Islands conservation groups have sued the US Department of Defense and the Navy over live-fire exercises planned for the Pagan and Tinian islands, as part of a military buildup planned for Guam. Seen as a part of the US’ “pivot...

Spy Culture - 2016-06-22 - Original post - cached version

One of the most prominent influences of pop culture on government and on the deep state is in the use of code names. From the capture of Saddam Hussein to a counter-smuggling helicopter unit in Hawaii, from a mass surveillance program named after Blazing Saddles to Secret Service and MI5...

Aletho News - 2016-05-20 - Original post - cached version

Rina Shimabukuro Press TV – May 19, 2016 Japan has submitted an official letter of protest to the US diplomatic mission in Tokyo over the brutal murder of an Okinawan woman, which is suspected to have been carried out by an American. On Thursday, Japanese Foreign Minister Fumio Kishida summoned...

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