Meet our Director; John Hagen & his thoughts...
53 MONTHS AGO
"Peter Arnett's stories were enthralling, his life seemed exciting and inspirational; in short, he was my hero. For a young boy from a military family Peter Arnett seemed to have the best job in the world, riding helicopters into battle zones, hanging out with all the cool guys, and getting famous by telling the world about it.
In truth he changed my life. The reality of the Vietnam War came crashing into our living room via the front page of the newspaper (and later on the tele). The glamorous, Commando Comic version of war was replaced by a chilling, emotional reality that has never left me. And for that I will be forever grateful to Peter. Sure, he was castigated by politicians and military leaders but I now had a thirst for the truth and Peter’s first hand accounts were giving it to me...
I'm fascinated by the seeming dichotomy of a famous journalist who hung his hat on ‘truth in journalism’ being a professor of journalism at a Chinese University. What do those young people know of freedom of the press and truth in journalism? And even if Peter can impart those ideals, what happens then?
I'm enthralled by the idea of seeing Peter walking across Vietnamese battlefields, recalling those conflicts – how scared was he? Was he aware that his reports were changing the way people thought about warfare forever?
...And there’s a part of me that wants to explore the big theme that seems to jump out of Peter’s story – where does truthful journalism end and propaganda begin? Is not telling the whole truth, because of censorship or not wanting to compromise your position with a hostile government, still the truth? Is reporting what the ‘other side’ says treason or truthfulness?"
Of course I want to tell his story in a film."