James Britt Donovan was an American lawyer, United States Navy officer, and political negotiator.
Donovan is widely known for negotiating the 1962 exchange of captured American U-2 pilot Francis Gary Powers for Soviet spy Rudolf Abel, and for negotiating the 1962 release and return of 1,113 prisoners held by Cuba after the failed Bay of Pigs Invasion. The story of the Abel trial and defense, followed by the tense negotiation and thrilling prisoner exchange at the height of the Cold War, was the basis for the book Strangers on a Bridge, written by Donovan and ghost writer Bard Lindeman. The book ultimately became the impetus for the Spielberg movie starring Tom Hanks, Bridge of Spies. Based on the success of the movie,Strangers has gained a renewed popularity and has been reissued