A Conversation with The Writer Who Uncovered the Story Behind Ben Affleck's ArgoS

The new, very well-reviewed Ben Affleck film Argo opens tomorrow. Argo tells the true story of how the C.I.A. cooked up a fake science fiction movie in order to sneak six Americans hiding in the homes of Canadian diplomats out of Tehran during the 1979 Iranian hostage crisis. Watch the trailer here.

Argo is adapted from a 2007 Wired feature by Joshuah Bearman. Bearman is a freelance writer whose work has appeared in Wired, Rolling Stone, Harpers and elsewhere, and who is a contributor to This American Life. (He also happens to have written one of my all-time favorite magazine pieces, about competitive Pac-Man players for Harpers) The story of the 52 hostages held in the Iranian embassy is of course well-known. But few knew the weird details of the escape of this smaller group of Americans before Bearman's story. To tell the story of Argo, Bearman dug through declassified documents and tracked the key players involved in the escape, including the C.I.A.'s master of disguise, Tony Mendez (played by Affleck in the film.)

Josh will be in the comments at 1 p.m. to answer your questions about Argo, Ben Affleck and having your work turned into a major Hollywood film.

Update, 2:30 p.m.: It's over! Go see the movie.