Willa Fitzgerald and John Magaro Strategize Leaking Nixon Tapes

18½ is a comedy inspired by Nixon’s involvement in the Watergate scandal, which eventually lead to him resigning from office in 1974. The movie follows a fictional White House transcriber who has exclusively received 18 minutes and 30 seconds of missing tapes. She then contacts a Times reporter in an attempt to leak them and provide political scandal evidence to the public. Together, they retrieve the tapes, having decided to listen to them together in an isolated area as the reporter takes notes. While doing so, they run into a myriad of problems and characters that prove their task to be more daunting than expected.


18½ stars Willa Fitzgerald, John Magaro, Gina Kreiezmar, Marija Juliette Abney, Richard Kind, Vondie Curtis-Hall, and more. The film is directed by Dan Mirvish who co-wrote it with Daniel Moya. Ahead of its May 27, 2022 theatrical release in Laemmle theaters in Los Angeles before expanding on June 3, we have an exclusive clip that gives us a glimpse into the strategy behind leaking the tapes.

In the clip, Connie (Fitzgerald) speaks with Times reporter Paul (Magaro) about the best way for him to get his story out of the tapes. It’s riddled with hesitation as she fears being indicted. He does his best to ensure her that she has nothing to worry about, and that not even his editor will know her name. You can watch it below.

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Exclusive 18½ Movie Clip

The film was acquired by Adventure Entertainment and has appeared in over 20 festivals, as well as boasts a 100% score on Rotten Tomatoes. Viewers can recognize Fitzgerald from many other notable roles including Roscoe Conklin in Reacher or Emma Duval in Scream: The TV Series. She also has a role in The Fall of the House of Usher, which is currently in production. Magaro has also garnered notable credits in his career, known for playing Vince Muccio in Orange Is the New Black, Charlie Geller in The Big Short, and Leonard Peabody in The Umbrella Academy. As for Mirvish, he is well known for movies like Between Us, Bernard and Huey, and is a co-founder of the Slamdance Film Festival.

18½ takes viewers on a fun journey full of quirky moments including what happens when you ask a hippy cult for help or an old couple who wants you to stay for dinner maybe a little too much. Even when the protagonists finally have everything they need, an almost inescapable force continues to challenge them and make releasing the Nixon tapes a struggle.

18½ is a production of 101 Films International, Bugeater Films, Kyyba films, and is associated with Syncopated Daydreams and Terry Keefe Media.

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Tim Kraft
(17 Articles Published)

Tim Kraft is the Editor in Chief of Movieweb. His favorite genre is a tie between horror and comedy.

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