"Operation Crossbow" Is Released
Operation Crossbow (later re-released as The Great Spy Mission) is a 1965 spy thriller and World War II film, made from a story from Duilio Coletti and Vittoriano Petrilli and filmed at MGM-British Studios.
It is a highly fictionalized account of the real-life Operation Crossbow, made with a veritable galaxy of British and German film stars but it does touch on the main aspects of the operation.
This big-budget, big-studio espionage film is set in the last years of World War II. George Peppard, Tom Courtenay and Jeremy Kemp parachute into Germany, with orders to destroy the Nazis' V-1 rocket base at Peenemunde. Given the order of billing, guess which special operative survives the longest. This being an MGM production, Peppard has time to commiserate with Sophia Loren, the wife of the Nazi collaborator whom Peppard is pretending to be. If you're wondering about the film's outcome, remember who won the war. Operation Crossbow failed badly in its first release; MGM, deciding that the title misled moviegoers into thinking that the picture was a "Robin Hood" derivation, cleared up matters by renaming the film The Great Spy Mission. ~ Hal Erickson, All Movie Guide