Empire (UK) - - PREMIERE -

ODD PHILLIPS IS GET­TING OUT OF the Han­gover busi­ness, and into the arms race. Specif­i­cally, he’s writ­ten and di­rected War Dogs, an in­ter­na­tional gun-run­ning “comedic drama” shot in six coun­tries. “I love trav­el­ling for movies,” Phillips tells Em­pire, “and the whole idea of the movie cir­cus. I find that en­ergy and fre­neti­cism al­ways finds its way into the film. There was a lot of run­ning around, but we were try­ing to tell a pretty big story.”

Based on an ar­ti­cle Guy Law­son wrote for Rolling Stone in 2011, the premise in­volves two young Mi­ami ston­ers, David Pack­ouz and Efraim Diveroli, who, with lit­tle more than an in­ter­net con­nec­tion and a mo­bile, pen­e­trated the “grey world” of in­ter­na­tional arms deal­ing in 2007 and ended up with The Pen­tagon for a client. The over­stretched Bush ad­min­is­tra­tion’s policy of out­sourc­ing mil­i­tary op­er­a­tions meant the pair were able to beat com­pe­ti­tion from For­tune 500 com­pa­nies sim­ply with the low­est quote. But a $300 mil­lion con­tract to sup­ply the US’ al­lies in Afghanistan saw them se­ri­ously out of their depth.

“My buddy (pro­ducer) Mark Gor­don sent me the ar­ti­cle, say­ing it was right up my al­ley,” says Phillips. “He was right.” Phillips loved it, work­ing on the screen­play for a pro­tracted

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