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Hollywood joins the fight against Isis

The US government has met with Hollywood execs to brainstorm ways to defeat the Islamic State – maybe we should just get Brucey on it

Films have been used as weapons against foreign enemies since – well, forever. It’s well known in film circles, for example, that the Pentagon often ‘reviews’ war films before they are released as a condition of allowing filmmakers access to military equipment and personnel. During the Second World War, the movie industry churned out films on demand to bolster morale during the fight against the Nazis. And even modern award-winners such as American Sniper and Zero Dark Thirty have been accused of being thinly veiled efforts to shore up support for America’s activities in the Middle East.

Thing is, most of the time Hollywood doesn’t want you to know that it’s trying to convince you to back US foreign policy. After all, propaganda tends to work better when you don’t realise it’s propaganda. Just ask the Die Hard generation of kids brought up back when Bruce Willis had hair who thought that all baddies spoke Russian and spent their free time trying to blow up office buildings.

Which makes it kind of odd that US Secretary of State John Kerry tweeted earlier today that he’d met with Hollywood studio chiefs to discuss “ideas of how to counter the Daesh narrative”. Daesh, in case you weren’t aware, is a term many people use to describe ISIS – believing the phrase ‘Islamic State’ gives them a sense of legitimacy. 

While Kerry didn’t set out what exactly was discussed in the round-table, it’s kind of tempting to imagine a Jack Bauer reboot where the diminutive hard-man takes on Jihadi John in an orange jumpsuit and wins. Or, some type of Die Hard meets 24 franchise where Baeur and John McClane team up to take out ISIS/Daesh permanently. That’s probably being developed right now and coming to a cinema near you soon, actually.