WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has described a forthcoming Hollywood film about him as a “massive propaganda attack” during a video-linked talk to students at Oxford University.
Assange said he had seen a copy of the script for The Fifth Estate, which stars Sherlock’s Benedict Cumberbatch and is directed by Dreamgirls’ Bill Condon. Addressing the Oxford Union from his refuge at the Ecuadorian embassy in London last night, the activist also described the film as an inflammatory attack on Iran.
The first picture of Cumberbatch as Assange was released yesterday, featuring Cumberbatch standing alongside Goodbye, Lenin!’s Daniel Brühl, who is playing the activist’s confidant Daniel Domscheit-Berg. The Fifth Estate, which focuses on the early days of WikiLeaks, is based on Domscheit-Berg’s book Inside WikiLeaks: My Time with Julian Assange at the World’s Most Dangerous Website, as well as Guardian writers David Leigh and Luke Harding’s WikiLeaks: Inside Julian Assange’s War on Secrecy.
Assange told the Oxford Union that Condon’s film began with scenes inside a military complex in Iran, where nuclear symbols could clearly be seen. The suggestion, he said, was that the country was building a nuclear weapon and the film was clearly an attempt to go about “fanning the flames” of war. “How does this have anything to do with us? It is a lie upon lie,” he said. “The movie is a massive propaganda attack on WikiLeaks and the character of my staff.”
Assange, who held a purported copy of the script for The Fifth Estate by The West Wing’s Josh Singer in his hand throughout, though didn’t show it to the camera, also quoted from a scene in which he said scientists were seen meeting a US agent. “How is it that a lie gets into a script about WikiLeaks?,” he asked.
Read more at the Guardian