File picture of Edward Snowden
Four Hong Kong friends have beaten Hollywood to the draw by producing the first film on former US intelligence technician Edward Snowden, the makers of the movie said Saturday.
"To be the first one to really do anything about it...it was quite invigorating," cinematographer and editor Edwin Lee told AFP of the five- minute YouTube video entitled "Verax".
The film imagines the drama which unfolded in Hong Kong leading up to Snowden's bombshell interview with British newspaper The Guardian, using local actors and shaky camera work reminiscent of the Bourne movie series.
The Guardian, along with the Washington Post, published information provided by Snowden about vast surveillance programmes run by the National Security Agency to gather Internet data and phone logs.
"This is a spy movie that's developing," Lee said of the inspiration behind the idea.
The expats from Ireland, Australia, the US and Canada, of which Lee was the only filmmaker by trade, made the film "to catch onto the interest on Snowden and the attention on Hong Kong," Lee said.
Production for the film took place at breakneck pace as drama, diplomatic intrigue and tensions around Snowden unfolded in the southern Chinese city.
Snowden flew Sunday from Hong Kong, where he had been holed up since May 20, bound for Moscow, despite Washington having requested his arrest and extradition.
The Kremlin says Snowden has been in the transit zone of Moscow's Sheremetyevo airport since he arrived on a flight from Hong Kong on Sunday but he has not appeared in public.