Hanoi Hilton: the Movie

A historical documentary filmmaker is opening up her archive that includes the last pictures taken of the Hanoi Hilton, where John McCain was imprisoned.

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In what could be a blockbuster boost for Sen. John McCain's presidential bid, a historical documentary filmmaker is opening up her archive that includes the last pictures taken of the Hanoi Hilton, the Navy pilot's POW cell, and his emotional reaction when shown those pictures. "It gives you some insight into the man," says filmmaker Debra Watkins. She tells us that cable news networks are going all out for the material, shot in 1993 and 1994. What sparked her interest? "A light went off in my head," Watkins says, after she read back then that the Vietnamese planned to bulldoze the Hanoi Hilton. After getting permission to visit, she filmed the prison and taped interviews with other former POWs. But the project was shelved because of a string of illnesses. Watkins says after seeing new reports questioning McCain's pow story, she dusted off her 31 hours of unedited material and is shopping it around. As for McCain's cell, she found it as he left it: dirty, wet, dank. "The leg irons were still there. It looked like a tomb."