BBC Orders ‘9/11: The Twenty Year Anniversary’ Documentary From Top Hat & BAFTA-Winner Arthur Cary, Keshet Aboard For Sales

9/11 attacks
9/11 attacks AP

EXCLUSIVE: BBC One has commissioned 9/11: The Twenty Year Anniversary, a feature length documentary marking the 20th anniversary of 9/11, from UK firm Top Hat Productions (Exposed: The Church’s Darkest Secret) and BAFTA-winning director Arthur Cary (The Last Survivors).

The 90-minute film, which will air next year, will tell the story of the two-hour period when terrorist attacks on the Twin Towers, the Pentagon and Flight 93 changed the world forever. It will also tell a parallel narrative of how those two hours changed the lives of those who were there, with past and present interacting throughout the film.

The doc will unfold almost in real-time, and include some of the extraordinary stories of heroism from the day, as well as personal and public archive footage.

Keshet International will distribute internationally, launching it officially as part of their Mipcom 2020 slate.

Brit director Cary’s star is on the rise. His BBC and Frontline Holocaust documentary The Last Survivors won BAFTAs this year for best single documentary and best director: factual, while BBC film War In The Blood about cancer treatments scooped the RTS award for best single documentary.

9/11: The Twenty Year Anniversary was commissioned by Charlotte Moore, Director, BBC Content and Clare Sillery, Head of Commissioning, Documentaries, History and Religion. Exec is Darren Kemp and producer is Cheryl Hockey. Commissioning editor is Hamish Fergusson.

Clare Sillery, Head of Commissioning, Documentaries, History and Religion, said: “This film takes a new and different look at an important subject matter. All of our lives changed because of the events of 9/11, but for those who were there the effects are long lasting and deeply felt. The core cast of this film have not spoken publicly before. By looking at what happened to them on the day and their lives twenty years on, we can see how the shockwaves of that event still reverberate in profound ways today.”

Darren Kemp, executive producer, added: “9/11 is a remarkable story that never ended for those who lived through the tragic events of that day. The twentieth anniversary is an opportunity to take a fresh look at the events two decades ago and to see how they continue to play out in the lives of those who were there.”

The film is the latest in a raft of landmark TV projects set to mark 20 years since 9/11. As we previously revealed, producer Brook Lapping is in production on a film with ITV and France Televisions, and we hear other documentary announcements are imminent.

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