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Is "Zero Dark Thirty" a Prequel to "Homeland"?

The gritty flick about the CIA's hunt for Bin Laden sets the scene for the hit series. No, seriously!


Photo Courtesy of Jonathan Olley / Columbia Pictures

Shaky, hand-held cameras? Check. Sickening scenes of torture? Check. A beautiful, tough-as-nails female protagonist who will stop at nothing to get her man, no matter what everyone else thinks? Check. Zero Dark Thirty, the new movie from Oscar-winning Hurt Locker director Kathryn Bigelow about the decade-long search for Osama Bin Laden in the wake of 9/11, isn't just one of the best movies of the year; it also totally works as a prequel to Showtime's smash hit Homeland. In the movie, Jessica Chastain plays Maya, a CIA operative with the unenviable task of tracking down Osama Bin Laden. We hope we're not ruining anything when we tell you that she—with the help of some badass Navy SEALS—succeeds, despite the fact that throughout the film her superiors often doubt her hunches. Sounds a lot like Claire Danes' Homeland character Carrie, who we know spent most of the aughts overseas hunting and interrogating terrorists (and who has spent the show's entire two seasons searching for terrorist honcho Abu Nazir). We can't say any more without getting into spoiler territory—for both Zero Dark Thirty and Homeland—but suffice it to say, Maya does whip out a pretty spot-on Carrie Mathison cry face.

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