Did you know that nine years before Edward Snowden told the world about widespread NSA eavesdropping that he was Clint Eastwood in Heartbreak Ridge? Well, that’s not really true. He was a U.S. Army reservist beginning Special Forces training but he kind of looked like Eastwood and perhaps — who knows? — was lifting weights and smoking cigars and drinking Jack Daniels in the barracks after chow. This is certainly suggested in the first image from Oliver Stone‘s Snowden (Open Road, 12.25), the currently-rolling drama in which Joseph Gordon-Levitt portrays Snowden. The shot was chosen, of course, to counter assumptions in some quarters that Snowden’s NSA revelations were unpatriotic or anti-American. I don’t need to be convinced that Snowden is made of the right stuff but apparently some do. Or so it is believed.

Joseph Gordon-Levitt as NSA whistleblower Edward Snowden in Oliver Stone’s currently-filming Snowden (Open Road, 12.25).

Snowden is shooting from a script by Stone and Kieran Fitzgerald, and is based on Luke Harding‘s “The Snowden Files” and Anatoly Kucherena‘s “Time of the Octopus.” The film costars Shailene Woodley, Scott Eastwood, Melissa Leo, Timothy Olyphant, Zachary Quinto and Tom Wilkinson. Laura Poitras‘s Citizenfour, a superb you-are-there doc about Snowden’s whistle-blowing, just won the Oscar for Best Documentary Feature.