19:30 GMT04 July 2020
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    The script itself is yet to surface – although the Evening Standard has seen a pitch treatment, and describes it as “hilariously awful” and “written in classic Boris prose”.

    Prime Minister Boris Johnson has confirmed he authored the script for a proposed blockbuster film entitled Mission to Assyria in 2015, which failed to be picked up by the “distinguished director” it was sent to.

    Speaking to the Evening Standard, Johnson said he was “embarrassed to say” he received no response, and was “so crestfallen” he didn’t pursue it further. He nonetheless claimed while the script was “absolutely brilliant”, the idea was abandoned entirely after he saw an advert for George Clooney film The Monuments Men, about a team of academics who recover art looted by the Nazis during World War II.

    “I thought, ‘Damn, that’s probably my idea’,” Johnson lamented.

    ​Boris’s epic fantasy featured an archaeologist described as an “old Clooney/Connery/Eastwood type in his fifties” named Marmaduke Montmorency Burton, who teams up with a “gorgeous but scholarly” young lady to rescue relics in the “long-lost city of Tiglath-Pileser III in Syria, from the advancing evil of Islamic State”.

    Writing “I cannot abide the apathy of the west”, Johnson adds he was inspired by the destruction of large portions of the Middle East’s archeological heritage after the Iraq war to create “a glorious wish-fulfilment dream movie, a mixture of Golan-Globus and Raiders of the Lost Ark”. He suggests Angelina Jolie or Scarlett Johansson for the female lead, and describes enemy jihadis as being “spifflicated” with shovels.

    “We begin with a sickening montage of atrocities: beheadings of innocent people in orange jumpsuits, torchings of Shias, rapes of Yazidi women, and footage of the smashing and the demolition of the Assyrian cities … These bestial crimes are orchestrated by a horrible cologne-drenched jihadi with an air of mincing menace,” the pitch begins.

    There’s speculation the “distinguished” film industry figure was The King’s Speech director Tom Hooper.


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