Hollywood heavyweight Arnon Milchan has confirmed what has been rumored at for years—he was part of a clandestine effort to aid Israel’s alleged nuclear program.
Milchan, an American-Israeli producer behind hits like “Fight Club” and “Pretty Woman,” made the confession in a sit down with Israeli reporter Ilana Dayan, for the new season of current events show “Uvda,” or “Fact.”
The interview is set to air this evening.
In the piece, the 68-year-old talks about his work to purchase technologies Israel needed for its nuclear program, efforts that became gossip talk among his colleagues, leading to some awkward exchanges in the workplace.
“In Hollywood they don’t like working with an arms dealer, ideologically with someone who lives off selling machine-guns and killing,” he told Dayan. “Instead of someone talking to me about a script, I had to spend half an hour explaining that I’m not an arms dealer.”
“If people knew how many times I risked my life, back and forth, again and again, for my country. And suddenly, [I have to] defend myself – ‘I’m not an arms dealer, I don’t sell guns, I don’t sell rockets.’ I should have been aware of that, of what I’ll go through, and said, ‘F*** you.’ You know what, I did it for my country and I’m proud of it.”
Milchan also admitted there were some among his circle that were aware of his involvement in Israeli arms deals, and said he even tried at times to bring other Hollywood leaders in on the game, including late Jewish director Sydney Pollack.
“Pollack knew, but I didn’t want to scare him because he’s American… He could have said ‘no,” Milchan said. “He said ‘no’ many times, but he also said ‘yes’ many times.”
A book, titled “Confidential: The Life of Secret Agent Turned Hollywood Tycoon Arnon Milchan,” was published two years ago, accusing Milchan of working for Israel’s now nonoperational Bureau of Scientific Relations, which was called Lekem.
Hollywood personalities that feature in this evening’s episode include Russell Crowe, Ben Affleck, and Robert DeNiro.