YOU ARE HERE: LAT HomeCollections

The Envelope Screening Series

Ben Affleck: To cast himself in 'Argo,' actor plays an angle [Video]

December 03, 2012

As the director of "Argo," Ben Affleck knew who he wanted in the starring role as CIA agent Tony Mendez: himself.

"I was just greedy for this part in this movie," Affleck said at The Envelope Screening Series. What's more, he joked, the director and the actor "were sleeping together, so I talked myself into it."

Affleck was able to cast an array of established actors (Bryan Cranston, John Goodman, Alan Arkin) in prominent roles and a variety of up-and-comers (Clea Duvall, Rory Cochrane) in smaller but equally critical parts as the six American State Department employees hiding with the Canadian ambassador during the 1979 hostage crisis.

WATCH: Q&As from the Envelope Screening Series

While some of the actors (like Cranston) were playing composite characters, the other performers were playing historical figures and felt a strong desire to make sure they depicted their characters accurately, even within a slightly fictionalized tale. 

"I feel I owed it to this man," Goodman said of playing makeup artist John Chambers, "to get it right."

As this excerpt from the screening shows, Duvall and Cochrane shared his intent.


'Argo' wows at Telluride Film Festival

Ben Affleck goes for real-life drama in 'Argo'

For 'Argo's' Ben Affleck, complex stories and characters work best


Red carpet moments

PHOTOS: Memorable red carpet moments

VIDEO: Highlights from the Envelope Screening Series

Envelope Awards insider

THE ENVELOPE: Awards insider

Los Angeles Times Articles