Angelina JolieFrom 'The 39 Steps' to 'The Manchurian Candidate' to James Bond, our fascination with espionage, spies and double agents is limitless. And with the backdrop of the Cold War looming over cinema for decades, it's easy to mistake the real-life clandestine meetings, multiple aliases and secret missions as just another plot point.

In 'Salt,' one of the few espionage thrillers to feature a female lead, Angelina Jolie plays the titular character, a CIA agent accused of being a Russian spy who must prove her innocence or carry out her comrade-assigned orders. (Do you actually think we're going to tell you what they are?!) Washington, D.C., and New York are the playgrounds for multiple explosions, chase scenes and planned assassinations, with Liev Schreiber and Chiwetel Ejiofor as Jolie's fellow CIA agents who are trying to bring Salt in.

The role, which required extensive training in Muay Thai and Krav Maga, was originally envisioned for Tom Cruise. But Jolie snagged the part and holds her own against the Daniel Craigs and Sylvester Stallones of the world. Moviefone sat down with the three leads, as well as actual counterintelligence experts, to discuss the film and its real-life analogies.