Award-wining filmmaker Cyrus Nowrasteh has claimed that Bill and Hillary Clinton used their influence at Disney and ABC to ban a 2006 film “The Path To 9/11” which examines the truth behind the events that led up to the attacks on September 2001.
The four-hour film by the Iranian American writer-director examines former President Bill Clinton’s failure to capture and kill Osama bin Laden.
ABC reportedly spent $40 million to produce the miniseries, but shelved it indefinitely under alleged pressure from the Clintons.
“The amazing thing was the Clintons were able to put pressure on Disney/ABC basically to bury their own movie that they spent $40 million on, The Path to 9/11, which did air once, by the way, over two nights, and was number one in the ratings with 20 million viewers,” Nowrasteh told KSFO The Morning Show’s Brian Sussman.
The filmmaker said that in many ways, the Clintons are “more effective” at censorship “than the ayatollahs in Iran,” who banned his 2008 film, The Stoning of Soraya M., for its critical examination of the Iranian government. While Nowrasteh was able to smuggle DVD copies of Soraya M. into Iran, the filmmaker said “the Clintons made sure that no one can see The Path to 9/11.”
Nowrasteh said his miniseries, which won an Emmy and was nominated for six others in 2007, covered the period spanning the World Trade Center attacks of 1993 until September 11, 2001 “in factual detail, which was really the problem for the Clintons because we portray the opportunities that Bill Clinton had to kill bin Laden, and passed on it.”
“By censoring it, they made sure that the DVD was never released so that Americans could not see it, and they made sure that it was never re-broadcast,” he continued. “It is basically the only banned film in America.”
The film was apparently so politically controversial for the Clintons that Senate Democrats, led by
Sen. Harry Reid, reportedly threatened to revoke ABC’s broadcasting license if changes were not made to the film.
“[The Clintons] are out to silence their critics, as aggressively as they can possibly get away with,” Nowrasteh told KSFO. “The suppression of The Path to 9/11, the burying of it, the making sure that no DVD of it was ever released by a major company in this country, was all a direct result of her run for the presidency, her initial run. She was ultimately defeated by Barack Obama, but that’s what it was all about.”
Sussman asked Nowrasteh which is worse: the “blatant censorship” of Iran when it bannedThe Stoning of Soraya M., or the “sophisticated, backroom censorship” of The Path to 9/11 in the United States.
“I think the latter is worse, because we know better,” Nowrasteh replied. “This country is founded on freedom of expression, and freedom of artistic expression, and the mainstream media fell in line behind the Clintons.”
Nowrasteh concluded by saying that he was “hoping and praying” that no one would ban his upcoming film, The Young Messiah, which explores the life of a 7-year-old Jesus Christ. The film will be shown at the Conservative Political Action Conference (CPAC) next month before opening in theaters across the country on March 11.
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