The book “The Ghost Army Of World War II: How One Top-Secret Unit Deceived The Enemy with Inflatable Tanks, Sound Effects, And Other Audacious Fakery” by Rick Beyer and Elizabeth Sayles, came out in April. That title is every bit as interesting as it sounds, as it shares a true story from World War II that would be unbelievable if hadn’t actually happened. A film based on the book, simply titled Ghost Story, is now in development. Bradley Cooper and his producing partner Todd Phillips (the man who directed him in three Hangover movies) are teaming up with Andrew Lazar to produce it.
See, during World War II, a squad of folks recruited from art schools, ad agencies, and other creative businesses were brought together to create a large scale deception. They were asked to help fool enemy forces into thinking that the United States had more troops than they really had. Using inflatable tanks, bogus radio messages that diverted attention elsewhere, and even dummy soldiers,they created quite a ruse. Their efforts, which fooled Nazi spy planes as they attempted to survey the U.S. forces, are said to have saved tens of thousands of lives.
Cooper and Phillips have hired Henry Gayden (Earth To Echo) to write the script for the film. Warner Bros is obviously hoping that Cooper, hot off of the massive success of American Sniper, will also star in the film though that remains to be seen.
The studio will have to work hard, though, since the last film that told a quirky “side quest” story from World War II- George Clooney’s The Monuments Men– didn’t exactly set the world on fire.