Films from Past Years/ Man Nobody Knew: In Search of My Father, CIA Spymaster William Colby, The
Documentary Feature | USA | 2011 | 104 min | Website
Director: Carl Colby
“My father liked being invisible,” recalls filmmaker Carl Colby. The father in question is William Colby, a dedicated mainstay of the U.S. spy establishment who carried out covert missions as an OSS paratrooper in Norway, election-rigging operative in postwar Italy, and engineer of coups and assassinations in Vietnam, before becoming Director of the CIA in 1973. An enigma to the end, Colby volunteered damning evidence to Congress in 1975 and disappeared, a possible suicide, on a canoe trip in 1996. An impressive roster of insiders, including Zbigniew Brzezenski, Donald Rumsfeld, James Schlesinger, and Brent Scowcroft, lift the veil on the shadowy history of Cold War intelligence, but at the heart of this absorbing and unsettling documentary is a son’s attempt to come to grips with his famous but unfathomable father and the ethical questions that William Colby’s life so vividly raised.
“Carl Colby’s smart, fact-packed film, The Man Nobody Knew operates on many levels, all riveting.” -Andy Webster, The New York Times (The New York Times Critic’s Pick)
“Fascinating, deeply researched documentary about the long career of elusive CIA spymaster William Colby by his son provides more lessons about how access counts in both espionage and filmmaking.” -Doris Toumarkine, Film Journal