Fresno's Connection to the New Film "Eagle Eye"

September 25, 2008 9:43:33 PM PDT
A new Steven Spielberg suspense-thriller opens in theaters Friday. And you can thank a few Fresnans for keeping the edge of your seat action in the film true to life.If Billy Bob Thornton's portrayal as Federal Agent Thomas Morgan seems incredibly accurate ... you can thank Tom Knowles. He's a retired FBI Agent from Fresno. His job: to make the FBI scenes as real as possible.

FBI advisor Tom Knowles said, "Keeping in mind that you have to give them that theatrical lee way. So when there are those scenes that seem a little crazy about the FBI, I just had to step back."

"I mean what position were they holding the gun?!"

When Thornton's character takes aim at armed guards, it was Knowles who taught Billy Bob how to handle the shotgun.

"You gotta spin it, look at it, rack it and spin it look at it. And make sure there's nothing in there. And that's exactly what he did."

Fresno's Bryn Forhan worked in Washington DC for former Congressman Tony Coelho. She also put her stamp on the film as Eagle Eye's congressional advisor.

"I weighed in with regard to Chronology, set up, who goes where and what would happen in terms of protocol," said Forhan.

So how did they get this chance to become advisors on a Spielberg production? Knowles says 15 years ago, some aspiring writers asked him to look-over a script.

"That really helped my name go around. Then when I retired one of the folks that I know now works with DreamWorks called me and told me about this script and asked if would look at it," said Knowles.

Eventually Knowles recommended Forhan to advise in Eagle Eye's political scenes.

"Having this once in a lifetime opportunity to weigh-in on this was just exciting! I looked at it as a wonderful opportunity of not a gift," said Forhan

Also, the opening scene of a special Poshu funeral service ... Was choreographed by a local member of the Islamic Cultural Center in northeast Fresno.

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