The last movie Ben Affleck directed was Live by Night, a film he had to cut his own sex scene out of because he looked, by his own description, “like a sick polar bear.” But this two-time Oscar winner, like the phoenix tattooed across his back, will not be kept down by subpar work. According to The Hollywood Reporter, Affleck is onboard to direct and star in Ghost Army, an adaptation of the book The Ghost Army of World War II, by Rick Beyer and Elizabeth Sayles. Like Argo, this project will see Affleck going back to his narrative comfort zone: international conflict that involves clever misdirection by the protagonists to thwart an adversary. The book tells of an American combat division deployed in WWII that used trickery — sound effects, fake explosions, made-up radio transmissions, and so on — to con the German army into believing battles were taking place that didn’t actually exist. The foreign soldiers would in turn adjust their movements to skirt the staged conflicts, keeping Allied forces out of harm’s way. True Detective’s Nic Pizzolatto is credited with the latest version of the script, working from an earlier draft by Henry Gayden, who wrote Shazam!
Photo: Noam Galai/Getty Images