The familiar logo WARNER BROS. PRESENTS COMES UP.
After a beat, it is consumed by FIRE.
It becomes AN AMERICAN FLAG, BURNING in the street.
1 EXT. U.S. EMBASSY (TEHRAN) - MORNING 1
Effigies of Jimmy Carter and the deposed Shah -- crowds
chanting .“Magbar Carter! Magbar Ahmrika!.” Fists in the
TEHRAN - NOVEMBER 4, 1979
YOUNG MEN AND WOMEN -- about 2/3 men and 1/3 women, some
with flak jackets; about half the young women wear full
chador. Many wear plastic bibs with photographs of
PASTED TO ROOSEVELT GATE: photographs of STUDENTS who
were killed under the deposed Shah of Iran.’s regime.
Signs in English: .“U.S.A. RETURN THE SHAH.” -- .“JUSTICE
FOR MURDER..” A few IRANIAN POLICE attend -- more as
bystanders than peacekeepers.
A MAN frantically stabs an EFFIGY of the SHAH.
An IRANIAN STUDENT films the scene with a Super 8 camera.
2 EXT. EMBASSY GROUNDS - MORNING 2
From INSIDE THE EMBASSY GATES we can hear the noise of
the protest. There are three primary buildings on
the CHANCERY, the embassy.’s main building, THE
AMBASSADOR.’S RESIDENCE, and the CONSULATE.
We can see that the compound is securitized: sand-filled
traps and steel bars on the windows of the consulate.
3 INT. U.S. EMBASSY - CONSULATE OFFICE - MORNING 3
Now, we see the POV THROUGH those steel bars.
Standing on a chair looking at the protest outside the
gate, is BOB ANDERS, late 40s-50s, a consular officer.
Carnival.’s bigger today.
MARK LIJEK, 29, a consular officer, joins Anders at the
4 EXT. ROOSEVELT GATE - MORNING 4
Then, in a famous piece of archive footage, something
simple happens. A YOUNG MAN IN A SWEATER climbs the gate
and makes it to the other side.
And now, we see the REVERSE of that famous shot. This
isn.’t archive footage anymore.
We.’re looking at the POV of TOM AHERN, 48, the CIA
station chief here.
5 INT. MARINE GUARD POST - MORNING 5
From a pillbox on the embassy campus, SGT. ROCKY
SICKMANN, a young MARINE, can also see the protestors
break across the lawn.
MARINE SGT. SICKMANN
(into his radio)
... Fort Apache is breached -- *
please advise --
6 EXT. ROOSEVELT GATE - MORNING 6
The PROTEST in front of the gate is getting rowdier --
its energy and numbers swelling.
A group of STUDENTS -- these more brisk, organized, all
bearded and dressed in flak jackets -- push their way to
the front of the protest --
WOMEN raise a banner. It.’s a signal.
As if on cue, the IRANIAN POLICE move from the gates. A
WOMAN removes a large pair of bolt cutters from
underneath her chador -- hands them to a BEARDED STUDENT
-- who gets to work on the CHAINS holding the gate
When one YOUNG MAN wearing a green military field jacket
raises his fist, we can see that he has a concealed
PISTOL in his clothes.
More STUDENTS climbing the wall -- dropping the 12 feet
to the other side, one after another.
ARGO - Final 2.
7 INT. MARINE GUARD POST - MORNING 7
MARINE SGT. SICKMANN
THEY.’RE COMING OVER THE WALLS --
8 EXT. ROOSEVELT GATE - MORNING 8
But a moment later no more climbing is required, because
the GATE CHAIN IS CUT and protestors FLOOD through the
embassy gates, a human dam breaking --
9 INT. CHANCERY OFFICE - MORNING 9
Mounting chaos in here, the nerve center of the embassy.
Everyone on a different phone. It.’s like an emergency
room where the patient is the whole building.
ANN SWIFT, 31, Deputy Political Officer, has the phone by
her ear -- trying to hear reports from D.C.
There are hundreds of people out
No, thousands... There are *
thousands -- *
10 IN THE CONSULATE OFFICE - MORNING 10
Mark Lijek and Bob Anders look out windows, nervous, but
not like the Iranian VISA APPLICANTS who are close to
Are these supposed to be *
Well, they.’ve never been tested.
11 INT. CHANCERY (MARINE POST ONE) - MORNING 11
Six MARINES watch images from closed-circuit television
cameras on chunky 1970.’s monitors. Crowds of protestors
from every part of the embassy campus.
AL GOLACINSKI, 30, chief of security for the embassy,
shouts into a radio.
ARGO - Final 3.