On the 20th Anniversary of 9/11, FRONTLINE Airs New Documentaries; Redistributes Award-Winning Films From Its Archive


This 11 September 2001 file photo shows a man standing in the rubble, and calling out asking if anyone needs help, after the collapse of the first World Trade Center Tower in New York City. AFP PHOTO/Doug KANTER (Photo credit should read DOUG KANTER/AFP via Getty Images)

August 4, 2021

As the nation approaches the 20th anniversary of 9/11 and reflects on its indelible legacy, FRONTLINE is positioning itself to be a premiere destination for in-depth analysis and reporting on that fateful day and how it has shaped America and the world.

Beginning this month, FRONTLINE will present two new documentary specials offering a comprehensive look at how American life, politics and security shifted after 9/11. The PBS series will also start re-distributing films from FRONTLINE’s deep archive that probe the attack and the response that followed.

First, on Tuesday, August 10, FRONTLINE will air and begin streaming In the Shadow of 9/11, the latest documentary from award-winning director Dan Reed (Leaving Neverland), which explores the domestic terrorism case of the “Liberty City Seven” — a group of Black men from Miami accused of planning an Al Qaeda plot to blow up U.S. buildings. ­­Their trial marked the U.S. government’s first major post-9/11 domestic counterterrorism sting, yet the accused men had no weapons and never communicated with anyone from Al Qaeda.

In the Shadow of 9/11 shines a light on what America was willing to do to make a panicked nation feel safe — offering a window into how law enforcement confronted the terror threat at home in the wake of 9/11, and the ramifications of a desperate search to hunt down the “enemy within.”

Then on Tuesday, September 7, FRONTLINE will air and begin streaming America After 9/11. From veteran FRONTLINE filmmaker and chronicler of U.S. politics Michael Kirk and his team, this new documentary special traces the U.S. response to the terrorist attacks and devastating consequences across three presidencies.

Drawing on both new interviews and those from the dozens of documentaries Kirk and his award-winning team made in the years after 9/11, this two-hour special offers an epic re-examination of the decisions that changed the world and transformed America. From the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq to the January 6th insurrection, America After 9/11 exposes the legacy of September 11 – and the ongoing challenge it poses for the president and the country.

Plus, in connection with the 20th anniversary of the attacks, FRONTLINE will tap into its unrivaled archive of documentaries investigating the impact of 9/11, renewing the streaming rights for several films examining counterterrorism, Al Qaeda, ISIS and more.

Audiences will be able to revisit FRONTLINE’s critical, 9/11-related reporting in the library of streaming documentaries on and on FRONTLINE’s YouTube channel.

FRONTLINE will also be hosting a lineup of events related to 9/11 and its legacy with our filmmakers and experts — including a conversation with Dan Reed about In the Shadow of 9/11 and a conversation with Michael Kirk about America After 9/11. Subscribe to FRONTLINE’s newsletter and follow FRONTLINE on social media for more information.

In the Shadow of 9/11 premieres on Tuesday, August 10 at 9/8c on PBS, and America After 9/11 premieres on Tuesday, September 7 at 9/8c on PBS (check local listings). The films will be available to watch in full at and in the PBS Video App starting at 7/6c on the premiere nights. Sign up for FRONTLINE’s newsletter for more updates on archival documentaries that will be renewed for streaming on and on YouTube.

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