- The Washington Times - Monday, April 24, 2017

Actor Christian Bale used a promotional interview published Monday for “The Promise” to frame President Donald Trump’s administration as something inspired by a “Dictatorship for Dummies” book.

A Daily Beast interview on director Terry George’s $90 million film about 1.5 million massacred Armenians in the early 20th century soon turned to U.S. politics. Mr. Bale sat down with writer Marlow Stern for a wide-ranging talk that covered everything from World War I to Russian President Vladimir Putin and the 45th U.S. commander in chief.

Mr. Bale, who plays a reporter for The Associated Press during the fall of the Ottoman Empire, used the project as a springboard to talk about Mr. Trump.

“[The U.S. presidential election] was happening as we were filming. We shot this toward the end of 2015, so that was happening and then becoming more and more relevant,” the 43-year-old said. “Which is worrying, isn’t it, for us right now? It’s like we’re watching somebody reading a ‘Dictatorship for Dummies’ book.”

The English actor, who is gearing up to play former Vice President Dick Cheney in a biopic directed by Adam McKay, also said he feared living in a “post-truth era” of “questionable truths” and “alternative facts.”

“That is a dangerous thing,” Mr. Bale said. “The statement of: It doesn’t matter, I feel it so it must be. That’s f-ing dangerous.”

Mr. Bale declined to say whether he would be exploring the “hypocrisy of Cheney dodging Vietnam” in his next film.

“Let me for now remain silent on that,” Mr. Bale said. “We are early days; we are in process.”

“The Promise” opened last weekend at No. 9 with a domestic gross of $4 million. The film also stars Oscar Isaac from “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” and actress Charlotte Le Bon.

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