More than five years in the making, In the Shadow of 9/11 (1 x 90-minutes with 1 x 112-minute & 2 x one hour versions also available) tells the tragic and bizarre story of the ‘Liberty City Seven’ – a group of young Black men accused of assisting Al Qaeda in a plot to blow up buildings within the USA. This riveting documentary examines the moral panic that emerged from 9/11, as well as the FBI’s subsequent search to uncover the “enemy within”.
Dan Reed, director of multi award-winning documentary Leaving Neverland, which sold to nearly every territory in the world, acts as producer and director in his most complex and challenging documentary to date. In a deal brokered by Abacus Media Rights and AMOS Pictures, FRONTLINE (PBS) will air In the Shadow of 9/11 in August this year.
Jonathan Ford, Managing Director, AMR, comments, “It is a privilege to continue to build on our strong relationship and for AMR to represent a further exceptional Dan Reed documentary on the world stage. Dan is a master creator of hard-hitting, thought-provoking and highly-watchable factual programming and we are very excited to launch this new title.”
“We are proud to bring this story of injustice in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks to our audience here in the U.S., and to be working with Dan for the first time,” says FRONTLINE Executive Producer Raney Aronson-Rath. “He is an extraordinary filmmaker whose commitment to uncovering the truth about complex stories is a perfect fit with FRONTLINE’s brand of investigative reporting.”
In the summer of 2006, seven men were arrested with their trial marking the US Government’s first major post-9/11 domestic counter-terrorism sting. Such operations involved extensive surveillance and federal conspiracy charges, ultimately resulting in a conviction rate of nearly 100%.
Yet the 'Liberty City Seven' were not Muslims, had no weapons and never communicated with anyone from Al Qaeda. Sceptical juries twice delivered a mistrial and five of the seven were convicted only at the third federal trial, three years after their arrest. Two were acquitted, while the other five were convicted and have since been released from prison.
The five convicted members of the group have blended quietly back into American life, branded forever with the label “terrorist”. In the words of one of the defence attorneys: “The FBI invented the players, they invented the theme, they invented how it was gonna’ go down. They wrote this script…”