Feature

Colombian hostage rescue, the movie

Filmmakers rush for rights to a big story, but is it even true?

What happenedVertigo Entertainment and Colombian production company RCN are planning a movie about last week's rescue of hostages held for years by the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia, or FARC. Colombian filmmaker Simon Brand (Unknown, Paradise Travel) is slated to direct the movie. (The Hollywood Reporter)

What the commentators saidThis rescue made such a splash, said Michael Fleming and Anna Marie De La Fuente in Variety, that "several potential projects are already taking shape." The most famous of the 15 ex-hostages, former Colombian presidential candidate Ingrid Betancourt, is rumored to be seeking her own book and movie deal with French literary agent Susannah Lea.

Actually, "Betancourt has already announced that she's writing a play" about "her six-year hell," said Eugene Novikov on the movie blog Cinematical. However the details pan out, the stories from this incident are worth telling. "It's a case of truth being better than fiction": helicopter rescue, espionage, life-or-death stakes.

The only problem with the rescue story is that it might not be true, said Jack Chang in The Modesto Bee. Swiss radio reported that "the Colombian government didn't in fact pull off the amazing rescue ... but instead paid $20 million for the hostage release." Perhaps the Columbian account of events is indeed too movie-like to be true.

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