Film & TV

Watch the New Trailer for War Dogs, Based on a True Miami Story

"They call guys like us War Dogs — bottom-feeders who make money off of war, without ever stepping foot on the battlefield. It was meant to be derogatory, but we kind of liked it. " 

If you think the plot for Jonah Hill and Miles Teller's new movie War Dogs seems familiar, it should. It's based on the ridiculous and legendary tale of two stoners from right here in Miami who scored a $300 million contract from the Pentagon to become weapon suppliers for U.S. allies in Afghanistan. The pair's story takes them from the safety of their couch, where they clutch bongs and make deals over the phone, to high-speed, cocaine-fueled adventures, personally delivering guns through enemy territories to U.S. troops stationed in Baghdad. 

It's a story almost too outlandish for Hollywood. But it's headed to theaters next month, and fans of Hill, Teller, and South Florida ridiculousness can get a preview, thanks to a recently released new trailer.

Hill's character Efraim Diveroli is based on a Miami man heavily involved in the international arms-dealing business. Diveroli and his partner David Packouz, played by Teller (Divergent, Whiplash), find themselves completely out of their element, way over their heads, and stuck fighting to overcome multiple countries' international security obstacles. Somehow, simultaneous wars in Afghanistan and Iraq hinged on the arms deals brokered by two guys that met at Beth Israel Congregation, the largest Orthodox synagogue in Miami Beach. It seems as improbable as it does unbelievable, but it's a real thing that happened and is soon to be told on the big screen. 


War Dogs is based on a 2011 Rolling Stone article by Guy Lawson titled, “The Stoner Arms Dealers: How Two American Kids Became Big-Time Weapons Traders," and is directed by Todd Phillips. Phillps is best known for producing and directing Old School (2003) and The Hangover (2009). War Dogs is the first project that Hangover star Bradley Cooper and Phillips will coproduce since they recently put a new production team together.

The second trailer for War Dogs, previously titled Arms and the Dudes while it was filming in Miami last year, was released late last week and already has nearly 3 million views on YouTube. Apparently the story of two Miami burnouts who figure out a way to beat the system, thus scoring over a quarter-billion-dollar government contract to supply weapons for U.S. troops in Afghanistan, has broad appeal. 

War Dogs hits theaters on August 19. 
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Ryan Yousefi is a freelance writer for Miami New Times, a lover of sports, and an expert consumer of craft beer and pho. Hanley Ramirez once stole a baseball from him and to this day still owes him $10.
Contact: Ryan Yousefi