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Vladimir Putin Punked The Hell Out Of Oliver Stone With Some Old Footage

The Russian president told the venerable auteur that the footage on his phone was the Russian air force kicking ass. (Spoiler: it wasn't.)

Last updated on June 21, 2017, at 10:56 a.m. ET

Posted on June 20, 2017, at 1:37 p.m. ET

Legendary filmmaker Oliver Stone conducted a series of interviews with Russian President Vladimir Putin for an in-depth look at just what makes Putin tick.

/ Komandir/Courtesy of SHOWTIME

Stone, the director of such films as JFK, Platoon, and Snowden, once said he believed that the 2015 revolution in Ukraine was a CIA plot, so it's easy to see why Putin agreed to sit down with him.

In the trailer for the third episode, Putin shows Stone footage of what he says is "the work of our air force" against militants in Syria.

View this video on YouTube

"You wouldn't want to join ISIS if you saw that," Stone intones in the trailer.

BUT, as it turns out, that footage on Putin's phone probably wasn't Russian at all. Instead, it seems it was as American as baseball, apple pie, and the Apache series of attack helicopter.

/ Komandir/Courtesy of SHOWTIME

As a Facebook user noticed, and Russian-language outlet Meduza published, the video Stone was shown looked an awful lot like footage, posted in 2013, of an apparent 2009 US strike against the Taliban in Afghanistan.

Facebook: pfa230

A defense official who reviewed the YouTube footage told BuzzFeed News that it looked to be legitimate, but the official was unable to definitively confirm when it was taken. They also noted that the footage didn't include any way to identify the potential unit that might have filmed it.

Russian researchers at the Counter Intelligence Team put together this handy composite of Putin's phone video and the 2013 footage for ~comparison purposes~.

Footage of "Russian helicopter bombing ISIS" shown to Oliver Stone by Putin appears to be taken from 2013 US Afghan…

In the episode itself, according to Meduza, "the pilots' conversations are dubbed over in Russian," which is just next-level putting-your-name-on-something-you-didn't-do.

Dmitry Peskov, Putin's spokesperson, on Wednesday denied that the reports that the video wasn't Russian, saying it was a product of the Russian Ministry of Defense.

Sergei Karpukhin / AFP / Getty Images

Russian President Vladimir Putin attends a meeting with his Brazil's counterpart at the Kremlin in Moscow on June 21, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / POOL / Sergei Karpukhin (Photo credit should read SERGEI KARPUKHIN/AFP/Getty Images)

"Are you gonna start with this blogging bullshit?" Stone responded when asked at a small press conference on Wednesday when asked about the claims that the footage wasn't Russian.

"The bloggers that say this, the bloggers say that, we're gonna be in here all day," Stone said on the stream, broadcast on Ruptly, a video service owned by Russia Today. "I mean, fine, I don't know. He brought a phone, he showed it to us, we filmed it and hes aid this was that. Why would he fake it?"

So well played, Mr. Putin. If that's a forgery you've got going on there, you've managed to convince the man who convinced America that the Zapruder film was fake that it's legit.

/ Komandir/Courtesy of SHOWTIME, / Komandir/Courtesy of SHOWTIME

There's no word yet on whether Putin also dubbed his piano-playing skills during his interviews with Stone, but given his previous performances, we can at least assume that was real.

Nancy Youssef contributed to this report from Washington, DC.

A BuzzFeed News investigation, in partnership with the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists, based on thousands of documents the government didn't want you to see.