Truth is always slippery in spy movies, maybe even more so in a movie like 'Fair Game' that's based on real people and events that are still hotly disputed.
The movie, which opens Friday, recounts the 2003 controversy surrounding the outing of CIA operative Valerie Plame (Naomi Watts) by the George W. Bush White House, in response to her diplomat husband Joe Wilson's (Sean Penn) whistleblowing assertion that the administration had ignored evidence he'd gathered casting doubt on the existence of an Iraqi nuclear weapons program, one of President Bush's stated justifications for going to war against Iraq.
The Wilsons' supporters argued that they were being punished for revealing that the Bush team had misled the world in justifying the war, and that blowing Plame's cover harmed her covert efforts to curb nuclear proliferation, not to mention putting all her contacts in danger. The couple's critics claim to this day that the Wilsons were publicity hounds who'd overstated their own importance.
Of course, 'Fair Game' takes the Wilsons' side; they served as consultants to the production. Still, Plame has acknowledged in recent interviews that some events and characters have been altered, in part to protect the vow of secrecy she made to the CIA, and in part because even she doesn't know what became of some of her overseas contacts after she was exposed.