Former U.S. president Jimmy Carter says Argo gives short shrift to Canada

"The main hero, in my opinion, was Ken Taylor," Carter says

Former American president Jimmy Carter has weighed in on Oscar-nominated film Argo, saying he believes the movie deserves an Academy Award, but isn’t entirely accurate.

In an interview with CNN’s Piers Morgan, Carter said he believes the film was a “great drama” and deserved to win an Oscar for best film. However, Carter noted that although “90 per cent of the contributions to the ideas and the consummation of the plan was Canadian,” the film “gives almost full credit to the American CIA.”

“With that exception, the movie’s very good,” Carter said, going on to praise former Canadian ambassador Ken Taylor’s role in resolving the Iran hostage crisis.

“The main hero, in my opinion, was Ken Taylor, who was the Canadian ambassador who orchestrated the entire process,” he said.

Taylor hasn’t been shy about voicing his opinion on how the film measured up to reality. “My concern is that we’re portrayed as innkeepers who are waiting to be saved by the CIA,” the 77-year-old former ambassador said in an interview with Maclean’s following the film’s premiere.

Director Ben Affleck did manage to smooth things over: Taylor and his wife were later flown to Los Angeles to meet Affleck, see the film and share a commentary for the DVD, and in the process Taylor revised the film’s postscript. The former ambassador was also in attendance at a special reception at the Canadian Embassy in Washington, where Affleck spoke glowingly about Canada’s role.

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