Barry Seal's Wife Has Kept Her Life Very Private Since Her Husband's Murder

"I'm worried that people might come out of the woodwork. I don't like attention on me. But I'm not on social media," said Deborah Seal.

Brandon Charles - Author

Apr. 22 2024, Published 1:55 p.m. ET

Tom Cruise and Sarah Wright in 'American Made'
Source: Universal Pictures

Hollywood doesn’t always have time for the whole story. In American Made, pilot Barry Seal is a drug smuggler for Pablo Escobar-turned-DEA informant. Tom Cruise portrays the high flier and Sarah Wright plays his wife Lucy.

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Lucy Seal was actually Deborah Seal. There’s a version of her in the 2017 movie. While the on-screen portrayal of Barry's wife was fun, it wasn’t exactly reality. What happened to Barry Seal's wife? Keep reading for all of the details.

Sarah Wright as Lucy Seal in 'American Made'
Source: Universal Pictures
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What happened to Deborah Seal? She stays out of the spotlight.

Deborah spoke about the film with Daily Mail on Oct. 27, 2017. She said, “I went to watch it with my whole family and we all sat through it together. I had not seen the script so I knew I was going to be as surprised as anyone else. Of course, the kids were asking me at different parts 'Is that what happened mom?' But honestly, I was watching but my mind just was going back in time, to my life with my husband. The tears were falling down my face and I was particularly anxious to see how they would handle the murder itself.”

Speaking of the murder, while three men are currently behind bars for her husband’s execution, Debrorah still wants to know who ordered it. It’s one of the reasons she continues to lead a private life. "I'm worried that people might come out of the woodwork. I don't like attention on me. But I'm not on social media, so I don't expose myself a lot. I'm very private. I'm frankly not too excited about it. I don't like my life out there in public. I live a pretty secluded life."

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Source: YouTube

'American Made' has some truth and some storytelling.

In a Vulture piece published Sept. 22, 2017, director Barry Lyman was asked about the separation between truth and storytelling. If you have the chance to cast Tom Cruise, it doesn't really matter if the real-life person looked like Tom Cruise. The real Barry Seal weighed 280 pounds and Tom doesn't. In fact, he looks nothing like Barry. “Tom Cruise doesn’t look like Barry Seal," said the director.

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The director also spoke about Deborah's involvement in the film. "In the case of our story, Barry’s wife showed us a photo of her visiting him in a Guatemalan prison on his birthday and cutting his birthday cake with a machete. This is a woman who thought she was marrying a TWA airline pilot. I really feel like Sarah Wright’s character [of Barry’s wife, Lucy] is very true to Barry."

Tom Cruise and Sarah Wright in 'American Made'
Source: Universal Pictures

Actor Sarah Wright didn't speak to Deborah before filming American Made. In a Sept. 30, 2017 interview with GQ, when asked if she met her real-life inspiration Sarah said. “I did not. The producers talked to her and got some great stories and information from her about the couple's relationship. That was incredible to be able to hear that. We were able to apply some of that to the actual script. But it was based on his wife, so I didn't talk to her personally. I did want to."

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