Wag the Dog (1997)
Academy Award for Best Writing, Adapted Screenplay (Hilary Henkin, David Mamet)Award details: (details at IMDb)
Wag the Dog is a 1997 black comedy film produced and directed by Barry Levinson. The screenplay by Hilary Henkin and David Mamet was loosely adapted from Larry Beinhart's novel American Hero. The film stars Dustin Hoffman and Robert De Niro, with Anne Heche, Denis Leary, and William H. Macy in supporting roles. Just days before a presidential election, a Washington, D.C. spin doctor distracts the electorate from a sex scandal by hiring a Hollywood film producer to construct a fake war with Albania. The film was released one month before the outbreak of the Lewinsky scandal and the subsequent bombing of the Al-Shifa pharmaceutical factory in Sudan by the Clinton Administration, which prompted the media to draw comparisons between the film and reality.