Dou­ble and triple agents fool Nazis on in­va­sion

The Gold Coast Bulletin - Play Magazine - - TELEVISION -

THE story of the dou­ble agents who fooled the Nazis in the run-up to D-Day is be­ing made into a big-bud­get TV se­ries. The show, based on jour­nal­ist Ben Mac­in­tyre’s best-sell­ing book Dou­ble Cross, is the true story of how an ec­cen­tric group of spies tried to con­vince the Nazis the in­va­sion of Europe would hap­pen at Calais and not on the Nor­mandy beaches. They were so suc­cess­ful large num­bers of Ger­man troops were kept sta­tioned near the port and away from the vi­tal land­ing beaches. Mac­in­tyre says the ap­peal of the story is the ‘‘dodgy hu­man ma­te­rial’’ at the heart of it. ‘‘There are dou­ble agents, triple agents, even one quadru­ple agent. It is a ‘truth is stranger than fic­tion’ job so we can make it very dra­matic with­out de­part­ing from the truth. I mean, one of the main char­ac­ters is a Peru­vian bi­sex­ual play­girl with the unim­prov­able name of Elvira de la Fuente Chau­doir,’’ he says. The other spies in­clude a Ser­bian busi­ness­man, a Pol­ish sol­dier and a Span­ish chicken farmer who cre­ated a vast net­work of fic­tional agents who fed false in­for­ma­tion to the Ger­mans. The se­ries, which is be­ing de­vel­oped by the UK pro­duc­tion com­pany be­hind The King’s Speech – is ex­pected to in­clude a cast from the US and Europe. Mac­in­tyre says cast­ing has not be­gun, but he does have one star in mind. ‘‘I think Damian Lewis would be a fan­tas­tic . . . and I know he is very in­ter­ested in this area of his­tory,’’ he says. Mac­in­tyre says he in­her­ited ‘‘a rather black-and-white view’’ of World War II ‘‘where we were on the right side and they were on the wrong side and this is a far more con­fused pic­ture where good peo­ple do bad things for a good cause’’. There is a com­plex­ity to it that peo­ple like,’’ he says.

Dou­ble Cross: Com­ing soon; Home­land en­cores: Wed­nes­days, 8.30pm, One; Mon­days and Tues­days, var­i­ous times FX.

Wanted man: Damian Lewis

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