Conservative websites are claiming a new release of documents show that the "White House" gave "classified information" to filmmaker Kathryn Bigelow and screenwriter Mark Boal for their upcoming film about the Osama bin Laden raid. However, even the group that released those documents, Judicial Watch, does not claim that the "White House" gave Bigelow and Boal "classified information."
The Blaze, Human Events Accuse "Obama Administration" Of Serious Crime
The Blaze: "White House Let Hollywood Bigwigs Learn Classified Information So They Could Make Movie About Bin Laden Death." A post on The Blaze claimed that "the White House" "invited people in the entertainment industry" to get "entire treasure troves of classified information." [The Blaze, 5/23/12]
Human Events: "Obama Administration Leaks Classified Information To Makers Of Propaganda Film." A post on the conservative website Human Events claimed that the "[w]atchdog group Judicial Watch wanted some questions answered about the degree of access to classified information the White House granted to these very friendly filmmakers." [Human Events, 5/23/12]
But Judicial Watch Only Said "The Records" Show Filmmakers Were Given "Access"
Judicial Watch: Investigation Launched Following "Press Reports Suggesting That The Obama Administration May Have Leaked Classified Information." While the Judicial Watch press release says that its investigation was launched "following press reports suggesting that the Obama administration may have leaked classified information to the director," the release does not definitively cite a single example of classified information that was leaked. From the press release:
Judicial Watch, the organization that investigates and fights government corruption, announced today that it has obtained records from the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) and the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) regarding meetings and communications between government agencies and Kathryn Bigelow, Academy Award-winning director of The Hurt Locker, and screenwriter Mark Boal. According to the records, the Obama Defense Department granted Bigelow and Boal access to a "planner, Operator and Commander of SEAL Team Six," which was responsible for the capture and killing of Osama bin Laden, to assist Bigelow prepare her upcoming feature film. [Judicial Watch, 5/22/12]
Bush Administration Also Gave Filmmakers Access For "Hollywood Productions"
LA Times:"The Access Bigelow And Boal Have Had ... Is Not Unheard Of." A post on an LA Times blog noted that a filmmaker was "granted an hour with President Bush" for a movie he produced about September 11:
The access Bigelow and Boal have had to CIA, DOD and other government officials is not unheard of for Hollywood productions. "Battleship" director Peter Berg embedded for a month with Navy SEALs in western Iraq as research for his upcoming SEAL film "Lone Survivor," and filmmaker Lionel Chetwynd was granted an hour with President Bush for a 2003 movie he wrote for Showtime, "DC 9/11: Time of Crisis." [The Envelope, latimesblogs.latimes.com, 5/23/12]