The Looming Tower will air weekly from Friday 26th April at 9.30pm on BBC2.
If you don’t want to wait, the ten-part series is also available to stream online in the UK via Amazon Prime Video.
BBC Head of Programme Acquisition Sue Deeks explained why she wanted to bring the series to UK TV: “Brilliantly weaving archive footage with tense and compelling drama, The Looming Tower is a fascinating and illuminating deconstruction of the personalities and events that ultimately led to the horror of 9/11.”
What’s The Looming Tower about?
Based on the Pulitzer prize-winning book of the same name by Lawrence Wright, the ten-part drama is set in the late 1990s and charts the rising threat of Osama Bin Laden and Al-Qaeda, while following a growing rivalry between the CIA and the FBI — which reportedly comes to lay the foundation for the events of 9/11.
John O’Neill, the chief of the New York FBI’s counterterrorism unit (referred to as “I-49”), believes that the US faces a terrorist threat, but he is met with hostility from the CIA. The Agency is convinced that it’s better equipped to deal with Al-Qaeda, causing conflict between the two security organisations.
John O’Neill is played by Jeff Daniels, who received an Emmy nomination for the role. Daniels is best known for his film work, which include roles in Dumb and Dumber, Looper, Steve Jobs, 101 Dalmatians, Terms of Endearment and Fly Away Home, and for his Emmy-winning roles in TV series The Newsroom and Godless.
Tahar Rahim plays Ali Soufan, a Muslim Lebanese-American FBI agent and O’Neill’s protégé, who later goes undercover at terrorist meeting places. Rahim is probably best known for his role in French film The Prophet, and for playing Judas in the film Mary Magdalene.
Alec Baldwin (30 Rock) guest stars as George Tenet, the CIA director.
Also in the cast are Boardwalk Empire’s Wrenn Schmidt as CIA analyst Diane Marsh, while Peter Sarsgaard (An Education, Jackie) plays Marsh’s CIA boss Martin Schmidt. Meanwhile Bill Camp (Tamara Drewe) plays an FBI veteran Robert Chesney, who’s on the verge of retirement — but who then decides to assist O’Neill.
Michael Stuhlbarg (Call Me By Your Name, The Shape of Water) and Virginia Kull (Big Little Lies) also star.