Published On: Tue, Nov 26th, 2013

Arnon Milchan Film Producer & Mossad Spy : He Changes The Usual Meaning Of “Under The Covers” In Hollywood

 Ex-Israeli spy and Hollywood producer, Arnon Milchan, with alleged ex-arms merchant, Bibi Netanyahu and Shimon Peres

 As a film producer Arnon Milchan has been staggeringly successful, producing such hit movies as Mr. & Mrs. Smith, Fight Club and Pretty Woman.

It seems he has also been pretty good moonlighting as a spy for his country, something he has just come out and talked about frankly in an interview on Israeli TV last night with the investigative programme “Uvda” prepared by investigative journalist Ilana Dayan.

In the interview Arnon Milchan outlined a whole a series of secret engagements which could be plots for some of his blockbuster films, including how helping to acquire the technologies Israel needed to operate its alleged supply of nuclear weapons.

Of course the question that has not been answered, or even asked, is why now? Mr. Milchan has kept the secrets that were entrusted to him until now, as any good operative would. Why would he suddenly come out and blurt out that all along he has been working for the Israeli government.

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Ilana Dayen : Uvda (In Hebrew it means “Fact”)

Perhaps one part of the answer is that the Mossad may have felt it needed to burnish its public image a little in the light of all the difficult theatres of activity it has had to deal with lately, in places close to Israel and also some much further afield. A little of that celebrity hair spray from Hollywood can sure make a lot of friends, as indeed it already seems to be doing judging by the press reactions so far to the revelations.

Arnon Milchan a spy, you don’t say? is now on the tip of many lips.

“I did it for my country and I’m proud of it, ” said Mr Milchan, bluntly who managed a big fertilizer company in Israel before becoming a successful producer in Hollywood.

We are told that even as his career in movies flourished, he continued to maintain close ties with Israel’s leadership.

In an unauthorized biography about him published two years ago, Mr Milchan is said to have been recruited by Shimon Peres, no less, for Israel’s Bureau of Scientific Relations, known as “Lekem”, which was set up to get information for a variety of defence acquisition projects of great secrecy.

5185718 Arnon MilchanMilchan with Mr. and Mrs. Smith  /Getty

The bureau was disbanded in 1987 after it was implicated in a spying affair for which Jonathan Pollard, a civilian American intelligence analyst for the US Navy, was sentenced to life in prison.

Indeed the Pollard affair may be part of this as well a little; after all Israel is a friend of the United States and so is Arnon Milchan. So the unspoken part of that syllogism is then why is Jonathan Pollard still languishing in prison after 25 years? After all he was jailed only for giving Israel information about its own enemies not for giving Israel information about the United States. Yet here is a friendly spy making films on our own turf in broad daylight… and now he is talking all about it openly.

Where is the justice in that has been on many Israeli diplomats minds lately and this is perhaps a very subtle way of reiterating that basic question to the American people – surely Pollard has been punished enough?

The 68-year-old producer Milchan founded the New Regency film company and has produced more than 120 movies since the 1970s, working closely with directors such as Martin Scorsese, Roman Polanski, Sergio Leone and Oliver Stone.

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 Regency chairman Arnon Milchan (L) and singer/actor Justin Timberlake / Getty

He also forged an especially close relationship with actors, including Robert De Niro, who along with actors Russell Crowe and Ben Affleck, was also featured in Uvda’s broadcast.

“I had heard, but I wasn’t sure, ” De Niro said, of Mr Milchan’s activities.

“I did ask him once, and he told me that he was an Israeli and of course he would do these things for his country.”

During the programme, Milchan said: “Do you know what it’s like to be a 20-something-year-old kid and his country lets him be James Bond? Wow! The action! That was exciting.”

At the peak of his activities, he was operating 30 companies in 17 countries and brokering deals worth hundreds of millions of dollars, according to the programme.

Well Mr. Milchan, the role of James Bond is already spoken for by Daniel Craig. How about taking on the role of Dr. No yourself in a remake though?

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