AFI Catalog of Feature Films
Movie Detail
Name Occurs Before Title Offscreen Credit Print Viewed By AFI
United 93
Alternate Title: Flight 93
Director: Paul Greengrass (Dir)
Release Date:   28 Apr 2006
Premiere Information:   World premiere at Tribeca Film Festival: 25 Apr 2006
Production Date:   in New Jersey, Boston, Washington, Morocco and at Pinewood Studios, England
Duration (in mins):   111 or 115
Print this page
Display Movie Summary


Cast: United 93--Crew: JJ Johnson (Captain Jason M. Dahl)  
    Gary Commock (First Officer LeRoy Homer)  
    Polly Adams (Deborah Welsh)  
    Opal Alladin (CeeCee Lyles)  
    Starla Benford (Wanda Anita Green)  
    Trish Gates (Sandra Bradshaw)  
    Nancy McDoniel (Lorraine G. Bay)  
  United 93--Passengers: David Alan Basche (Todd Beamer)  
    Richard Bekins (William Joseph Cashman)  
    Susan Blommaert (Jane Folger)  
    Ray Charleson (Joseph DeLuca)  
    Christian Clemenson (Thomas E. Burnett, Jr.)  
    Liza Colon-Zayas (Waleska Martinez)  
    Lorna Dallas (Linda Gronlund)  
    Denny Dillon (Colleen Fraser)  
    Trieste Dunn (Deora Frances Bodley)  
    Kate Jennings Grant (Lauren Catuzzi Grandcolas)  
    Peter Hermann (Jeremy Glick)  
    Tara Hugo (Kristin White Gould)  
    Marceline Hugot (Georgine Rose Corrigan)  
    Cheyenne Jackson (Mark Bingham)  
    Joe Jamrog (John Talignani)  
    Corey Johnson (Louis J. Nacke II)  
    Masato Kamo (Toshiya Kuge)  
    Becky London (Jean Hoadley Peterson)  
    Peter Marinker (Andrew Garcia)  
    Jodie Lynne McClintock (Marion R. Britton)  
    Libby Morris (Hilda Marcin)  
    Tom O'Rourke (Donald Peterson)  
    Simon Poland (Alan Anthony Beaven)  
    David Rasche (Donald Freeman Greene)  
    Erich Redman (Christian Adams)  
    Michael J. Reynolds (Patrick Joseph Driscoll)  
    John Rothman (Edward P. Felt)  
    Daniel Sauli (Richard Guadagno)  
    Rebecca Schull (Patricia Cushing)  
    Chloe Sirene (Honor Elizabeth Wainio)  
    Olivia Thirlby (Nicole Carol Miller)  
    Chip Zien (Mark Rothenberg)  
    Leigh Zimmerman (Christine Snyder)  
  United 93--Hijackers: Khalid Abdalla (Ziad Jarrah)  
    Lewis Alsamari (Saeed al Ghamdi)  
    Omar Berdouni (Ahmed al Haznawl)  
    Jamie Harding (Ahmed al Nami)  
  Boston Air Traffic Control: Thomas Roberts (Himself)  
    Michael Bencal (Boston controller)  
    Tom Fitzgerald (Boston controller)  
    Bard Marques (Boston controller)  
    John Moraitis (Supervisor)  
    Scott Tourin (Boston controller)  
  Cleveland Air Traffic Control: Amanda Boxer (Cleveland supervisor)  
    Morgan Deare (Cleveland supervisor)  
    Daniel Fraser (Cleveland controller)  
  Herndon: Ben Sliney (Himself)  
    Tobin Miller (Himself)  
    Rich Sullivan (Himself)  
    Tony Smith (Himself)  
    Michael Bofshever (John White)  
    Carol Bento (Herndon staff)  
    Robert Serviss (Herndon staff)  
    Matt Siebert (Herndon staff)  
    Peter Wong (Herndon staff)  
  N.E.A.D.S: Major James Fox (Himself)  
    Staff Sgt. Shawna Fox (Senior ID tech)  
    1st Lt. Jeremy Powell (Himself)  
    Patrick St. Esprit (Major Kevin Nasypany)  
    Gregg Henry (Col. Robert Marr)  
    Karen Kirkpatrick (Major Dawne Deskins)  
  New York Air Traffic Control: Curt Applegate (Himself)  
    Kevin Delaney (New York controller)  
    John Kaplun (New York controller)  
    John E. Smith (New York controller)  
    Peter Pellicani (Paul Thumser)  
  Newark tower: Greg Callahan (Himself)  
    Rick Topper (Himself)  
    Bill Walsh (Newark supervisor)  
    Colin Scoggins (Himself)  

Summary: At dawn on September 11, 2001, Ziad Jarrah, Saeed al Ghamdi, Ahmed al Naimi and Ahmed al Haznawi read the Koran and pray in a New Jersey hotel room. Haznawi tells Jarrah, in Arabic, “It’s time,” and the four men get dressed, slipping knives and box cutters into their pockets before embracing one another. They go to the Newark Liberty International Airport in New Jersey, where they check in for United Flight 93 and go through security. As the men take separate seats in the departure lounge, the airline’s crew members get the plane ready for the nonstop flight to San Francisco. Meanwhile, at the Federal Aviation Administration’s command center in Herndon, VA, Ben Sliney reports to work as the new national operations manager and greets his team. At the FAA’s air traffic control center in Boston, controllers are concerned because American Airlines Flight 11, en route to Los Angeles, is not responding to radio transmissions. When a voice with a foreign accent is heard from the cockpit, the controllers suspect that the plane has been hijacked. Back in Newark, United 93 has boarded but is still on the runway. The pilot announces a delay due to heavy air traffic, and the four Middle-Eastern men, who are seated throughout the first-class cabin, grow increasingly uneasy. At the FAA command center, Sliney receives word that a flight attendant on Flight 11 called American Airlines and reported that the plane was being hijacked and several people had been stabbed. In Boston, the FAA replays the tape of the last transmission from Flight 11, in which a man in the cockpit says, “We have some planes,” and determines that more than one plane has been hijacked. United Flight 93 is finally cleared for takeoff, just as the air traffic control center in Ronkonroma, New York, loses radio communication with United Flight 175, which is flying from Boston to Los Angeles. American Flight 11 disappears from radar over New York City, and a few minutes later, air traffic controllers in Newark are shocked to see thick smoke billowing from the north tower of the World Trade Center in lower Manhattan. Initial news reports suggest that a light aircraft has hit the tower, but when Sliney watches the coverage on television news channel CNN, he realizes that the damage is too great to have been caused by a small plane. Meanwhile, United Flight 175, which is now heading toward New York, appears to be on a collision course with another airplane and does not respond to redirection from the frantic air traffic controllers. United 175 begins a rapid descent, and the controllers watch in horror as, live on CNN, the plane crashes through the second tower of the World Trade Center. Sliney gives the order to ground all planes in Boston, New York and Washington, D.C. The FAA soon receives word that American Flight 77 is missing, and all further departures are canceled as the air traffic controllers try to figure out what is going on. The Northeast Air Defense command center, which has received information that American Flight 77 is still in the air, asks the government to clarify the rules of engagement, but is not given authority to shoot the plane down. In the United 93 cockpit, the pilots see a message on the computer about planes hitting the World Trade Center. In the cabin, the passengers are eating breakfast when Naimi goes to Jarrah and urges him to take action. Jarrah nervously insists that the others wait for his sign, but Haznawi grows impatient and goes into the restroom with his flight bag. As the other men silently pray in their seats, Haznawi unwraps a large battery and bricks of modeling clay, then assembles what appears to be a bomb and straps it around his waist, zipping his jacket over it. After Haznawi returns to his seat at the rear of the cabin, Ghamdi grabs a flight attendant and holds a knife to her throat. Naimi then stabs a passenger as Haznawi rips off his jacket to reveal the bomb. In the ensuing chaos, Jarrah forces the flight attendant to open the door to the cockpit. Ghamdi stabs the pilot and copilot, and Jarrah takes control of the plane. As the air traffic controllers listen to the screaming and sounds of a struggle coming over the radio, Ghamdi kills the flight attendant and shuts the cockpit door. In the cabin, the terrified passengers are forced to the back of the plane and subdued by Naimi and Haznawi, who brandishes the loose wires from the bomb threateningly. After trying in vain to contact the cockpit, flight attendant Sandra Bradshaw calls United’s maintenance department and reports the hijacking. When the hijackers in the cockpit learn that the World Trade Center towers were hit, Ghamdi goes out to share the news with the other two. The passengers begin discreetly using their cellphones and the air phones on the back of the seats to call people on the ground and urge them to contact the authorities. As the flight attendants are tending to the wounded passenger, Sandra sees the hijackers drag the pilots’ bodies out of the cockpit. Some passengers overhear her say that the pilots are dead and tell people on the phone. CNN broadcasts a story about a plane crashing into the Pentagon, and the FAA bans all international flights from entering the country. On Flight 93, passengers on the phone with their loved ones learn that two planes have hit the World Trade Center, and that there has been an “explosion” at the Pentagon. The news quickly spreads throughout the cabin, and some of the passengers conclude that the hijacking is a suicide mission. Passenger Todd Beamer tells Sandra to find anything that could be used as a weapon, and she and the other flight attendants gather wine bottles, silverware, hot water and a fire extinguisher. Now aware of their fate, the passengers begin calling home to tell their families they love them. Several of the passengers form a plan to overpower the hijackers and take control of the plane, intending to get a passenger with some flight experience into the cockpit. Armed with the makeshift weapons the flight attendants have distributed, the passengers attack the hijackers, beating Haznawi with a fire extinguisher. The panicked Jarrah begins flying erratically, causing the plane to lurch violently. The passengers persevere, and after overpowering Naimi, they use a beverage cart to ram through the cockpit door. They struggle fiercely with Jarrah but cannot seize the controls quickly enough. The plane crashes to the ground in a field near Pennsylvania. 

Production Company: Universal Pictures (NBC Universal)
  StudioCanal (Canal+ Group)
  Working Title Films (NBC Universal)
  Sidney Kimmel Entertainment  
Production Text: A Paul Greengrass film
Distribution Company: Universal Pictures (NBC Universal)
Director: Paul Greengrass (Dir)
  Chris Forster (2d unit dir)
  Chris Carreras (1st asst dir)
  Robert P. Grayson (1st asst dir, 2d unit)
  Julie Bloom (1st asst dir, New Jersey unit)
  Sallie Hard (2d asst dir, Working Title)
  Kiersten Pilar Miller (2d asst dir, New Jersey unit)
  Tom Brewster (3rd asst dir, Working Title)
  Nick Shuttleworth (3rd asst dir, 2d unit)
  Matt Power (2d 2d asst dir, New Jersey unit)
Producer: Tim Bevan (Prod)
  Eric Fellner (Prod)
  Lloyd Levin (Prod)
  Paul Greengrass (Prod)
  Debra Hayward (Exec prod)
  Liza Chasin (Exec prod)
  Michael Bronner (Assoc prod)
  Kate Solomon (Assoc prod)
  Mairi Bett (Line prod)
  Michelle Wright (Exec in charge of prod, Working Title)
Writer: Paul Greengrass (Wrt)
Photography: Barry Ackroyd (Dir of photog)
  Mike Eley (Dir of photog, 2d unit)
  Sean Bobbitt (Dir of photog, 2d unit)
  Klemens Becker ('A' cam op)
  Phil Oetiker ('A' cam op, New Jersey unit)
  Chris Norr (Cam op, Plate unit)
  John Kronhouse (Cam op, Aerial unit)
  Bebe Dierken (1st asst 'A' cam)
  Jim Belletier (1st asst 'A' cam, New Jersey unit)
  Chris Reynolds (1st asst cam, Plate unit)
  Dianne Koronkiewicz (1st asst cam, Plate unit)
  Dan Shoring (1st asst cam, 2d unit)
  Nicole Dierken (2d asst 'A' cam)
  Lee Vickery (2d asst 'A' cam, New Jersey unit)
  Natasha Back (2d asst cam, 2d unit)
  Lisa Origlieri (2d asst cam, Plate unit)
  Jamie Silverstein ('B' cam op/Steadicam, New Jersey unit)
  Carl Hudson (1st asst 'B' cam)
  Jeff Dutemple (1st asst 'B' cam, New Jersey unit)
  Sara Deane (2d asst 'B' cam)
  Nate Swingle (2d asst 'B' cam, New Jersey unit)
  Tim Morris (Central loader)
  Fran Weston (Clapper loader, 2d unit)
  Simon Gilmour (Clapper loader, 2d unit)
  Tim McNulty (Loader, New Jersey unit)
  Ken Thompson (Loader, Aerial unit)
  John Dolan (Key grip, New Jersey & Plate units)
  John McSweeney (Grip 'A' cam)
  Andy Edridge (Grip 'B' cam)
  John Rake (Cam grip, 2d unit)
  Colin Ginger (Cam grip, 2d unit)
  David Cadwallader (Cam grip, 2d unit)
  David Cross (Cam grip, 2d unit)
  Pat Shelby (Addl grip, New Jersey & Plate units)
  Brad Goss (Dolly grip, New Jersey unit)
  Dave Freeth (Libra head op)
  Andy Thompson (Crane op)
  Matt Moffatt (Gaffer)
  John Ash (Gaffer, 2d unit)
  Petr Hlinomaz (Gaffer, New Jersey unit)
  Pat Miller (Rigging gaffer)
  Vince Maddon (Best boy)
  Jon Delgado (Best boy, New Jersey unit)
  T. Y. Chennayult (Genny op, New Jersey unit)
  Peter Brimson (Elec)
  John Campbell (Elec)
  Kevin Day (Elec)
  Brandon Evans (Elec)
  Warren Ewen (Elec)
  Kevin Fitzpatrick (Elec)
  Mark Hanlon (Elec)
  Peter Harris (Elec)
  Barry McCullagh (Elec)
  Joe McGee (Elec)
  Noel Miller (Elec)
  Kenny Monger (Elec)
  Rob Monger (Elec)
  Robert O'Brien (Elec)
  Larry Park (Elec)
  Raymond Potter (Elec)
  Laurie Shane (Elec)
  Paul Sharp (Elec)
  Paul Stewart (Elec)
  Pop Keeling (Elec, 2d unit)
  John King (Elec, 2d unit)
  Dave Samuels (Elec, New Jersey unit)
  Peter Graf (Tech, Aerial unit)
  Chris Craig (Desk op)
  Andy Jupp (Moving light rig op)
  Paul Harford (Chargehand elec rigger)
  Robert Diebelius (Elec rigger)
  Darren Howton (Elec rigger)
  Ian Pape (Elec rigger)
  John Pitt (Elec rigger)
  John Robertson (Elec rigger)
  Grant Wiesinger (Elec rigger)
  Steve Howe (Standby rigger, 2d unit)
  Chris McAleese (FT2 cam trainee)
  Anthony Benjamin (FT2 grip trainee)
  Adrian Spanna (Video playback op)
  Christopher Murphy (Video assist, New Jersey unit)
  Max Frankston (2d video assist, New Jersey unit)
  Jonathan Olley (Stills photog)
  K. C. Bailey (Stills photog, New Jersey unit)
  Colin Elves (Cam car, 2d unit)
  Arri Media (Cam equipment)
  Arri Lighting (Lighting equipment)
  Alpha Grip (Grip equipment)
  Elstree Light & Power (Moving light rig)
  PS Production Services Limited--Canada (Chapman cam cranes and dollies)
  Arion (Prod telecine facilities)
  Pinewood Photographic Centre (Stills processing)
Art Direction: Dominic Watkins (Prod des)
  Alan Gilmore (Supv art dir)
  Joanna Foley (Art dir)
  Romek Delimata (Art dir)
  Clement Price-Thomas (Art dir, New Jersey unit)
  Sarah Stuart (Standby art dir)
  Kathy Heaser (Graphic artist)
  Emma Davis (Prod buyer)
  Jordan Crockett (Draughtsman)
  Jonathan Richardson (Asst concept artist)
  Sally Ross (Art dept coord)
  Eva Radke (Art dept coord, New Jersey unit)
  James Collins (Art dept asst)
  Katherine Tidy (Food stylist)
  Mary Luther (Food stylist)
Film Editor: Clare Douglas (Ed)
  Christopher Rouse (Ed)
  Richard Pearson (Ed)
  Tom Kinnersley (Assembly ed)
  Christopher Bell (Assembly ed)
  Ian Differ (1st asst ed)
  Esther Bailey (2d asst ed)
  Jake Cook (Asst ed)
  Laurence Johnson (Asst ed)
  Alex Fenn (Asst ed)
  Clive Noakes (Laboratory contact)
  Cutting Edge (Negative cutting)
  Clear Cut Hires (Editing facilities & equipment)
  Gearbox (Sound and Vision) Limited (Avid and Pro Tools equipment)
Set Decoration: Michael Standish (Set dec)
  William Reynolds (Set dec, New Jersey unit)
  Richard Mills (Prop master)
  Ruth Di Pasquale (Prop master, New Jersey unit)
  Andrew Grant (Dressing propsman)
  Don Santos (Dressing propsman)
  Tom Read (Dressing propsman)
  Graham Stickley (Dressing propsman)
  Jonathan Downing (Standby props)
  Andrew Forrest (Standby props)
  Gary Ixer (Standby props, 2d unit)
  Alan Bryant (Property storeman)
  Chris Seddon (Drapesman)
  Malcolm Roberts (Const mgr)
  Garry Moore (Standby carpenter)
  Martin Hubbard (Supv carpenter)
  Mark Brady (Carpenter)
  Leigh Chesters (Carpenter)
  Wayne Day (Carpenter)
  Kevin Deardon (Carpenter)
  Garry Fisher (Carpenter)
  Wayne Hammond (Carpenter)
  Jo Hawthorne (Carpenter)
  Paul Nott Macaire (Carpenter)
  Simon Marjoram (Carpenter)
  David Mayhew (Carpenter)
  Peter Mayhew (Carpenter)
  Tom McCarthy (Carpenter)
  Simon Robilliard (Carpenter)
  Graham Weames (Carpenter)
  James Weames (Carpenter)
  Daniel Wells (Carpenter)
  Alan Gooch (Chargehand painter)
  Michael Sotheran (Chargehand scenic painter)
  Jay Sotheran (Scenic painter)
  Jessie Walker (Standby scenic, New Jersey unit)
  Jason Ivall (Painter)
  Michael Gunner (Painter)
  David Gray (Standby rigger)
  John Field (Supv rigger)
  Robert Gurney (Rigger)
  Paul Mitchell (Rigger)
  Neil Robertson (Rigger)
  Nicholas Ross (Rigger)
  Kenneth Slater (Rigger)
  John Wright (Rigger)
  Nigel Gray (Supv metal worker)
  Stephan Batterham (Welder)
  Norrie Henderson (Welder)
  Bruce Mayhew (Welder)
  Anthony Wass (Welder)
  Keith Smith (Supv stagehand)
  Frank Carr (Stagehand)
  John Folly (Stagehand)
  Graham Jarman (Stagehand)
  Eddie O'Neill (Stagehand)
  Leonard Roberts (Stagehand)
  Colin Smith (Stagehand)
  Royston Smith (Stagehand)
  Robert Voysey (Supv plasterer)
  Oliver Howlett (Plasterer)
  Stephen Watts (Plasterer)
  Peter Dunbar (Leadman, New Jersey unit)
Costumes: Dinah Collin (Cost des)
  Marion Weise (Cost supv)
  Richard Sale (Asst cost des)
  Katherine Karbowski (Ward supv, New Jersey unit)
  Liz McGarrity (Ward shopper, New Jersey unit)
  Lee Croucher (Cost standby)
  Sue Casey (Cost standby)
  Una Nicholson (Cost standby)
  Luan Placks (Cost standby)
  Barley Massey (Cost standby)
  Mei Lai Hippisley Coxe (On set costumier, New Jersey unit)
  Amy Burt (On set costumier, New Jersey unit)
  Laura Downing (On set costumier, New Jersey unit)
  Raul Ferreira (On set costumier, New Jersey unit)
  Sara Libmann (Ward PA, Plate unit)
  Jessica Hillyer (Ward PA, Plate unit)
  Natalie Walsh (Cost trainee)
Music: John Powell (Mus)
  Nick Angel (Mus supv, Working Title)
  Alexandra Hill (Mus coord, Working Title)
  Mike Higham (Mus ed)
  Kathy Nelson (Exec in charge of mus for Universal Pictures)
  Gavin Greenaway (Mus cond)
  John A. Coleman (Mus orchestrated by)
  John Ashton Thomas (Mus orchestrated by)
  Isobel Griffiths (Orchestral contractor)
  Gavyn Wright (Orch leader)
  Simon Rhodes (Mus rec and mixed by)
  Dan Lerner (Addl rec)
  Abbey Road Studios (Rec and mixed at)
  Rob Houston (Asst eng)
  Fiesta Mei Ling (Mus copyist)
  Oliver Powell (Solo vocal)
  Germaine (Comp asst)
  Matteo Franco (Comp asst)
Sound: Chris Munro (Sd mixer)
  Ian Munro (Sd mixer, 2d unit)
  Steve Thomas (Sd mixer, 2d unit)
  Richard A. Mader (Sd mixer, New Jersey unit)
  Serge Stanley (Sd mixer, Plate unit)
  Oliver Tarney (Supv sd ed)
  Eddy Joseph (Supv sd ed)
  Stuart Morton (Sd ed)
  Martin Cantwell (Sd ed)
  Jack Whittaker (Sd ed)
  Colin Woods (Sd maintenance)
  Gary Dodkin (Boom op, 2d unit)
  Jason Benjamin (Boom op, New Jersey unit)
  Nathan Duncan (2d boom op)
  Jim McBride (Sd eng)
  Richard Fordham (Dial ed)
  Tony Currie (Dial ed)
  Simon Chase (Dial ed)
  Iain Eyre (Dial ed)
  David Mackie (Asst sd ed)
  Carol Jones (Sd editorial support)
  Soundelux London (Sd editorial and post prod by)
  Harry Barnes (Supv Foley ed)
  Alex Joseph (Foley ed)
  Mark Hackett (Foley mixer)
  Paul Hanks (Foley artist)
  Ian Waggott (Foley artist)
  Universal Sound (Foley rec at)
  Michelle Mader (Sd utility, New Jersey unit)
  De Lane Lea Post Production Limited (Sd re-rec at)
  Lion Dubbs Limited (Sd re-rec at)
  Michael Prestwood Smith (Re-rec mixer)
  Douglas Cooper (Re-rec mixer)
  Sven Taits (Addl re-rec mixer)
  Mathew Gough (Addl re-rec mixer)
  Chris Burdon (Addl re-rec mixer)
  Paul Conway (ADR supv)
  Gina R. Alfano (New York ADR supv)
  Robert C. Jackson (LA ADR supv)
  Goldcrest Post Production Facilities (UK ADR facility)
  Sound One (New York ADR facility)
  Magno Sound & Video (New York ADR facility)
  Wilshire Stages (LA ADR facility)
  TODD-AO Hollywood (LA ADR facility)
  Andy Thompson (UK ADR mixer)
  David Boulton (New York ADR mixer)
  Mark De Simone (New York ADR mixer)
  Chris Navarro (LA ADR mixer)
  Ron Bedrosian (LA ADR mixer)
Special Effects: Peter Chiang (Visual eff supv)
  John Moffat (Visual eff digital supv)
  Rick Leary (3D supv)
  Stuart Farley (3D supv)
  Matt Plummer (Visual eff prod)
  Clare Tinsley (Visual eff prod)
  Alex Hope (Visual eff prod)
  Jo-Anne Dixon (VFX ed)
  Joss Williams (Spec eff consultant)
  Mike Dawson (Spec eff coord)
  Stuart Digby (Senior SFX)
  Ben Broadbridge (SFX crew)
  Andrew Bunce (SFX crew)
  Keith Dawson (SFX crew)
  Tony Edwards (SFX crew)
  Terry Flowers (SFX crew)
  Hayley Williams (SFX crew)
  Vanessa Boyce (Digital artist)
  Jamie Briens (Digital artist)
  Andre Brizard (Digital artist)
  Nik Brownlee (Digital artist)
  Darren Christie (Digital artist)
  Alastair Crawford (Digital artist)
  Sean Danischevsky (Digital artist)
  Daniel Evans (Digital artist)
  Ellie Faustino (Digital artist)
  Pedro Garcia (Digital artist)
  Rohit Gill (Digital artist)
  Peter Godden (Digital artist)
  Pawel Grochola (Digital artist)
  James Guy (Digital artist)
  Pete Hanson (Digital artist)
  Gavin Harrison (Digital artist)
  Simon Hughes (Digital artist)
  Tim Jones (Digital artist)
  Abraham Kambanopoulos (Digital artist)
  John Kilshaw (Digital artist)
  Kirsty Lawlor (Digital artist)
  Helena Masard (Digital artist)
  Tristan Myles (Digital artist)
  Ami Patel (Digital artist)
  Christoph Salzmann (Digital artist)
  Foad Shah (Digital artist)
  Matthew Shaw (Digital artist)
  Will Skellhorn (Digital artist)
  Tom Steadman (Digital artist)
  Jim Steel (Digital artist)
  James Tomlinson (Digital artist)
  Sanju Travis (Digital artist)
  Sharon Warmington (Digital artist)
  Guy Williams (Digital artist)
  Daniel Wood (Digital artist)
  Trevor Young (Digital artist)
  Cineimage (Digital main and end titles)
  Useful Companies (Digital playback & des)
  Simon Staines (Creative supv, Useful Companies)
  Justin Owen (Project supv, Useful Companies)
  Sara-Jane Owen (Coord, Useful Companies)
  Gavin McKenzie (Tech, Useful Companies)
  David Kirman (Tech, Useful Companies)
  Rhys Owen (Tech, Useful Companies)
  Daniel Griffith (Radar programmer, Useful Companies)
Make Up: Kirstin Chalmers (Hair & make-up des)
  Francesca Crowder (Key hairdresser)
  Peta Dunstall (Hair & make-up artist)
  Renata Gilbert (Hair & make-up artist)
  Kristie Matthaie (Hair & make-up artist)
  Donald McInnes (Hair & make-up artist)
  Sharon Paula O'Brien (Hair & make-up artist)
  Loz Schiavo (Hair & make-up artist)
  Julia Willson (Hair & make-up artist)
  Sara Riesel (Make-up artist, 2d unit)
  Eva Polywka (Make-up artist, New Jersey unit)
  Patricia Grande (Hairdresser, New Jersey unit)
Production Misc: Amanda Mackey (Casting)
  Cathy Sandrich Gelfond (Casting)
  John Hubbard (Casting)
  Dan Hubbard (Casting)
  Sig De Miguel (Casting)
  Karen Etcoff (Extras casting, New Jersey unit)
  Brendan Donnison (ADR voice casting)
  Vanessa Baker (ADR voice casting)
  Kate Bulpitt (Casting assoc)
  Kelly Hendry (Casting asst)
  2020 Casting (Addl & background casting)
  Sasha Harris (Prod mgr)
  Bryan Thomas (Unit prod mgr, New Jersey unit)
  Angela Morrison (Chief operating officer, Working Title)
  Sarah-Jane Robinson (Prod exec, Working Title)
  Sam Knox-Johnston (Prod coord, Working Title)
  Drew Tidwell (Prod coord, New Jersey unit)
  Holly Rymon (Prod coord, Plate unit)
  Ann Lynch (Exec coord, Working Title)
  Kate Bailey (Asst prod coord, Working Title)
  Hollie Foster (Asst prod coord, Working Title)
  Andrea Pappas (Asst coord, New Jersey unit)
  Jennifer Madeloff (Asst coord, Plate unit)
  Chloé Dorigan (Asst to Tim Bevan, Working Title)
  Aliza James (Asst to Eric Fellner, Working Title)
  Andrea Truscott (Asst to Paul Greengrass, Working Title)
  Suzie Batters (Asst to the cast, Working Title)
  Scott Sullens (Prod secy, New Jersey unit)
  Mike Clark-Hall (Prod asst, Working Title)
  Alexander J. Smelson (Office prod asst, New Jersey unit)
  Shannon Kearney (Office prod asst, New Jersey unit)
  Parry Creedon (Office PA, Plate unit)
  Jason Booth (Set prod asst, New Jersey unit)
  Boryan Javinovich (Set prod asst, New Jersey unit)
  Jillian Roache (Set prod asst, New Jersey unit)
  Mark Romanelli (Set prod asst, New Jersey unit)
  Cherie Ross (Set prod asst, New Jersey unit)
  Chris Ryan (Set prod asst, New Jersey unit)
  Jamie Weisman (Set prod asst, New Jersey unit)
  James Chesterton (Prod runner, Working Title)
  Sandrine Loisy (Floor runner, Working Title)
  Jae-Sung Oh (Floor runner, Working Title)
  Adam Byles (Floor runner, Working Title)
  Celena Radwanski (Floor runner, Working Title)
  Jack Brewster (Floor runner, Working Title)
  Sam Haveland (Floor runner, Working Title)
  Keith Hatcher (Loc mgr)
  Peggy Robinson (Loc mgr, New Jersey unit)
  Carol Flaisher (Loc mgr-Washington, Plate unit)
  Paul Langford (Asst loc mgr)
  Antony Gutierrez (Loc asst, New Jersey unit)
  Josh Kesner (Loc PA, New Jersey unit)
  Chan Claggett (Loc asst-Washington, Plate unit)
  Tom McMurtry (Pilot, Aerial unit)
  Michael Gram (Co-pilot, Aerial unit)
  Leki Aviation (Plane hire)
  Mike Solinger (Post prod supv)
  Jolyon Haverson (Post prod coord)
  Liz West (Scr supv)
  Polly Hope (Scr supv, 2d unit)
  Sheila Paige (Scr supv, New Jersey unit)
  Jim Hajicosta (Prod accountant)
  Shefali Ghosh (Chief financial officer, Working Title)
  Olimpia Rinaldi-Iodice (Accountant, New Jersey unit)
  Anslem King (Accountant, Plate unit)
  Patricia Porter (Payroll accountant, New Jersey unit)
  Jason Potter (1st asst accountant)
  Rob Seager (1st asst accountant)
  Katherine Dejesus (Asst accountant, New Jersey unit)
  Lawrence Joseph (Cashier)
  Ben Sliney (US air traffic control)
  Colin Scoggins (US air traffic control)
  Lt. Col. Stephen Clutter (US Air Force adv)
  Major James Fox (US Air Force adv)
  1st Lt. Jeremy Powell (US Air Force adv)
  Ajmal Masoor (Religious adv)
  Muna Amr (Religious adv)
  Khaled Hroub (Religious adv)
  Dr. Mahjoob Zweiri (Religious adv)
  Insaf Daham (Lebanese adv)
  Twafik Saif (Saudi adv)
  JHA SAFE T (Health & safety consultant)
  Chris Cullum (Standby health & safety adv)
  Carrie Johnson (Unit nurse)
  Deborah Blake (Unit medic, New Jersey unit)
  All England Film Caterers Ltd. (Caterer)
  The Wilson Rivas Company (Catering, New Jersey unit)
  Barrie Williams (Transport capt)
  Jim Buckman (Transport capt, New Jersey unit)
  Bill Baker (Transport co-capt, New Jersey unit)
  David Manning (Driver to Paul Greengrass)
  Danny Jarman (Unit driver)
  Set Wheels (Addl unit cars)
  Westgate Cars (Addl unit cars)
  Gavin Mullins (Minibus driver)
  Andy Clark (Minibus driver)
  Lance Dejesus (NY Teamster driver, Plate unit)
  Glen Williams (Washington Teamster driver, Plate unit)
  Jon Johnson (Parking coord, New Jersey unit)
  Translux (Facility vehicles)
  Sheeraz Shah (Head of legal & bus affairs, Working Title)
  Gráinne McKenna (Senior legal & bus affairs exec, Working Title)
  Lucy Wainwright (Legal & bus affairs exec, Working Title)
  AON/Albert G. Ruben (Insurance)
  Marshall/Plumb (Legal clearances)
  Research Associates, Inc. (Legal clearances)
  Jennifer Madeloff (US clearances)
  Dora Komura Gonzalez & Harris (Visa services)
  Lorenzo Robinson (Facilities capt)
  Wavevend (Walkie talkies)
Stand In: Greg Powell (Stunt coord)
  Abbi Collins (Stunts)
  Nick Chopping (Stunts)
  Kelly Dent (Stunts)
  Dave Fisher (Stunts)
  Amanda Foster (Stunts)
  Sarah Franzl (Stunts)
  Paul Herbert (Stunts)
  Rowley Irlam (Stunts)
  Paul Kennington (Stunts)
  Jamie Millington (Stunts)
  Daniel Naprous (Stunts)
  Ray Nicholas (Stunts)
  Brian Nickels (Stunts)
  Peter Pedrero (Stunts)
  Alison Ryan (Stunts)
  Gordon Seed (Stunts)
  CC Smiff (Stunts)
  Roy Taylor (Stunts)
  Dominic Preese (Stunt safety)
  Jade Gordon (Asst to stunt coord)
Color Personnel: Sarah Micallef (Prod, Framestore CFC)
  Maria Stroka (Prod, Framestore CFC)
  Framestore CFC (Digital intermediate)
  Asa Shoul (Colourist, Framestone CFC)
  Steve Wagendorp (Digital grading asst, Framestone CFC)
  Brian Krugsman (Digital grading asst, Framestone CFC)
  Jason Burnett (Scanning and rec, Framestone CFC)
  Annabel Wright (Digital clean up, Framestore CFC)
MPAA Rating: R
Country: Great Britain and United States
Language: English

Music:
Songs:
Source Text:

Copyright Claimant Copyright Date Copyright Number
Universal City Studios, LLLP 6/3/2006 dd/mm/yyyy PA0001363708

PCA NO: 41676
Physical Properties: Sd: Dolby Digital; dts Digital Sound in selected theatres
  col: DeLuxe; Kodak Motion Picture Film

 
Genre: Drama
 
Subjects (Major): Air traffic controllers
  Heroism
  Hijackers
  Muslims
  September 11 terrorist attacks, 2001
  Suicide bombers
  Terrorists and terrorism
  United States. AIr Force. Northeast Air Defense Sector
  United Airlines Flight 93 hijacking incident, 2001
 
Subjects (Minor): Air pilots
  Airplanes
  Airports
  Fights
  Flight attendants
  The Koran
  Murder
  Newark (NJ)
  Pennsylvania
  Self-defense
  Telephones, Mobile
  Television news and information
  United States. Federal Aviation Agency
  World Trade Center (New York City)

Note: The working title of the film was Flight 93 . Only the company credits and title appear before the film; all other credits are at the end. The following written epilogue appears before the end credits: “Of the four aircraft hijacked that day, United 93 was the only one that did not reach its target. It crashed near Shanksville, Pennsylvania at 10:03 a.m. No one survived. Military commanders were not notified that United 93 had been hijacked until four minutes after it had crashed. The nearest fighter jets were 100 miles away. At 10:18 a.m., the President authorized the military to engage hijacked aircraft. Fearing an accidental shoot down, military commanders chose not to pass the order to pilots in the air. By 12:06 p.m. every civilian airliner over America had been forced to land. Amidst an unprecedented military mobilization, U.S. airspace was closed until further notice. Dedicated to the memory of all those who lost their lives on September 11, 2001.”
       Paul Greengrass' onscreen credit reads "Written and directed by." The closing credits give special thanks to a long list of the hijacking victims’ family members and acknowledge the Department of Defense, the Royal Air Force’s 48th Fighter Wing, the North American Aerospace Defense Command, the Northeast Air Defense Sector (NEADS), the 102nd Fighter Wing in Massachusetts, the 119th Fighter Wing in North Dakota and Dr. Mahjoob Zweiri of the Institute for Middle Eastern & Islamic Studies, Dunham University. The credits also state that United 93 was filmed on location in New Jersey, Boston, Washington, Morocco and at Pinewood Studios, England.
       On 11 Sep 2001, nineteen men hijacked four transcontinental flights as part of an organized terrorist attack. American Airlines Flight 11 and United Airlines Flight 175 were flown into the towers of the World Trade Center in lower Manhattan, and American Flight 77 crashed into the Pentagon. United Flight 93 took off from Newark’s Liberty International Airport with thirty-seven passengers, including the four hijackers, on board. The plane was scheduled to depart for San Francisco at 8:00 a.m., but did not take off until 8:42 a.m. due to air traffic delays. At 9:28 a.m., the hijackers attacked and seized control of the plane, presumably killing the pilots. It is not known exactly what occurred on the plane after that, although many emergency services operators, as well as friends and family of passengers and crew members on the flight, have released transcripts or publicly related details from private cellphone conversations with them during the hijacking. The most well-publicized of these was passenger Todd Beamer's later famous "Let's roll," which is related in the film in a soft whisper, followed by "let's go."
       An in-depth investigation by the National Commission on Terrorist Attacks Upon the United States (more commonly known as the 9/11 Commission), yielded the following information: Shortly after the takeover of the airplane, the passengers and flight crew began making calls from the plane’s air phones and their own cellphones. Speaking with their family members and colleagues on the ground, the passengers learned about the attacks on the World Trade Center earlier that morning. The passengers and surviving crew members decided to revolt against the hijackers, and at 9:57 a.m., the assault on the hijackers began. The struggle went on for about five minutes before the hijackers crashed the plane into an empty field in Shanksville, PA, about twenty minutes’ flying time from Washington, D.C. The 9/11 Commission Report summarized the outcome of the hijacking thus: “[Hijacker Ziad] Jarrah’s objective was to crash his airliner into symbols of the American Republic, the Capitol or the White House. He was defeated by the alerted, unarmed passengers of United 93.”
       According to The 9/11 Commission Report , the two federal agencies responsible for protecting U.S. airspace, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and the North American Aerospace Defense Command, were unprepared to deal with the scope and unusual nature of the hijackings. The report noted that the protocols in place at that time assumed that a hijacking “would take the traditional form: that is, it would not be a suicide hijacking designed to convert the aircraft into a guided missile.” As depicted in the film, the FAA command center’s national operations manager, Ben Sliney, gave the unprecedented order to instruct all aircraft to land at the nearest airport.
       News items noted the following about the production: British director Paul Greengrass submitted a 21-page treatment to Universal Pictures in the summer of 2005 and was immediately given a $15 million budget to make the film. As part of his extensive pre-production research, Greengrass and associate producer Kate Solomon traveled across the U.S. to conduct more than a hundred interviews with the families of the victims, who gave their full cooperation to the project. Greengrass shot the airplane scenes in an old Boeing 757 reconstructed on a Pinewood Studios sound stage. The actors portraying the terrorists were kept separate from the rest of the cast until the hijacking sequence was shot. Ben Sliney, who portrays himself in the film, had just begun his new job at the FAA’s command center in Herndon, VA, on 11 Sep 2001. According to a 22 Apr 2006 LAT article, Sliney was originally hired for a cameo role in the film, but Greengrass later dismissed the actor cast in the role of Sliney and asked the FAA manager to play himself. Greengrass cast other roles with nonprofessional actors as well. JJ Johnson, who portrays Captain Jason M. Dahl, is a real United pilot, and Trish Gates, who plays flight attendant Sandra Bradshaw, had been a flight attendant with United. In addition, a number of real air traffic controllers and military personnel—many of whom were on duty on 9/11—portrayed themselves in the film. According to a 26 Apr 2006 LAT article, actor Karim Saleh, who had portrayed a terrorist on the 2005 Steven Spielberg film Munich (see above) auditioned for a role in United 93 .
       United 93 depicts the hijacking in real time. In a NYT interview, Greengrass observed that the people on the plane “had 30 minutes to confront the reality of the way that we’re living now, decide on the best course of action and act.” He added that the passengers on United Flight 93 were the “first people to inhabit the post-9/11 world." A Village Voice news item reported that an unfinished print of the film concluded with a title card that read: “America’s war on terror had begun.” According to the Screen International review, the title card was "replaced with something more sobering and reflective."
       On the DVD commentary, Greengrass revealed the following information about the film’s production: He originally planned to start the film in Afghanistan and show Osama bin Laden and Sheik Mohammed planning the attack. After shooting this scene in Morocco, however, he decided it “seemed redundant.” He also originally shot scenes of the crew members getting ready in their hotel rooms. The scenes in the air traffic control command centers and on the plane were shot in very long takes—often 45 to 60 minutes—using two cameras so that filming never had to stop while a camera was being reloaded. Many airplane scenes were shot with a camera suspended on a pulley for low-angle perspective. Later, in post-production, special effects technicians painted in the gap where the pulley ran through the center of the aircraft.
       Explaining that he had wanted to give audiences "a ringside view of the events," Greengrass said in the commentary, “We tried to make no concessions to things being comprehensible. There was no attempt made to explain jargon—for instance, technicalities of transponders being dropped and course changes and so on.” He added, “If this film was going to feel real, it needed to be quite challenging.” In addition to the director’s commentary, the DVD contains, as added content, a short documentary in which family members and friends of the United 93 victims share memories, meet the actors portraying their loved ones and attend a private screening of the film. There is also a memorial section that presents pictures and biographies of the passengers and crew members.
       According to a 1 May 2006 article in Var , Universal Pictures courted conservative commentators in the weeks before the film’s release. Right-wing talk show hosts Rush Limbaugh and Dennis Prager were invited to advance screenings, and both endorsed the film. Prager also wrote in his syndicated column: “Apparently many Americans are not ‘ready’ to see a film about 9/11 ‘so soon’ after 9/11. If this is so, it is an ode to the weakening of the American people.” The studio also hired Motive Entertainment, a Christian marketing firm, to distribute “ United 93 Resource Guides,” which included sermons inspired by the film.
       News items reported that an AMC movie theater in New York pulled the promotional trailer for United 93 after audiences complained and began running a short making-of film instead. Universal defended the trailer, which included news footage of the World Trade Center attack, claiming that the trailer was being shown in thousands of theaters and no other cinema owner had pulled it.
       The film had its premiere on 25 Apr 2006 as the opening-night selection at the Tribeca Film Festival. According to a 25 Apr 2006 DV news item, festival organizers decided to host the premiere in midtown, instead of at its usual venues in lower Manhattan, for fear that the proximity to Ground Zero could be too emotionally difficult for the audience. Private screenings for families of passengers were held on 8 Apr in Newark, NJ, and on 9 Apr in Daly City, CA. A 1 Jun 2006 LAT news item reported that the film was screened at the White House on 30 May. Iraqi-born actor Lewis Alsamari (who portrayed hijacker Saeed al Ghamdi), was refused a visa to attend the New York premiere. A resident of London, Alsamari had been granted asylum in Britain in 1998. According to news items, Universal contributed 10% of box office revenue from the first three days of the film’s North American release to the Flight 93 National Memorial Fund, an organization that seeks to build a memorial near Shanksville, PA.
       Reviews for United 93 were generally strong, although much of the film’s press coverage questioned whether the American public was ready for a film about the 9/11 attacks. The LAT review said, “This staggering, draining film is exceptionally accomplished but extremely difficult to watch.” NYT called United 93 “a persuasively narrated, scrupulously tasteful re-creation,” but added, “[The film’s] narrow focus, along with the lack of fully realized characters, and the absence of any historical or political context, raises the question of why…this particular movie was made.” Some reviewers complained that the scene in which the passengers fight with the hijackers took too much dramatic license. In a NYT editorial, Frank Rich wrote, “Two major liberties taken with the known facts in United 93 —sequences suggesting that passengers thrashed and possibly killed two of the hijackers and succeeded in entering the cockpit—are highly cathartic but unsupported by the evidence.” Village Voice cited this depiction of the struggle as “the most problematic of the movie’s unverifiable events, and one might say its biggest concession to popular taste.”
       On 10 Jul 2006, Var reported that the film had become an unexpected hit in the Middle East, grossing close to $200,000 in its opening week in the United Arab Emirates. Var noted that the film was cleared by censors in countries throughout the Persian Gulf, including Lebanon, which had banned the 2005 film Syriana (see above).
       In addition to being named one of AFI’s Movies of the Year for 2006 and being included on more than seventy “ten best” lists, United 93 received Academy Award nominations for Best Director and Film Editing, and was named Best Picture of the year by the New York Film Critics Circle. Greengrass was named Best Director by the British Academy of Film and Television Arts (BAFTA) and the National Society of Film Critics. The film received a BAFTA award for Editing and a nomination for Sound, in addition to a Writers Guild of America nomination for Best Original Screenplay. The film also was nominated for Best Picture by the London Film Critics’ Circle and the Broadcast Film Critics Association. As reported in LAT on 12 Jan 2007, controversy arose surrounding Universal Pictures' Oscar campaign for United 93 after ads featuring the voice of critic Peter Travers, who spoke glowingly about the film, were broadcast on local Los Angeles radio stations. Although LAT reported that Travers was not paid for the spots, and was only reading excerpts from his 27 Apr 2006 Rolling Stone review, other critics and media groups were highly critical of the ads.
       Although United 93 was the first released feature film to depict the actual 9/11 attacks, the events had already been the subject of two made-for-television films. DC 9/11: Time of Crisis , which aired in Sep 2003 on the Showtime cable network, focused on the Bush administration’s response to the attacks. Flight 93 was broadcast on the A&E cable network in Jan 2006 and drew almost six million viewers, the biggest audience in A&E’s history. Oliver Stone’s feature film World Trade Center , which opened in Aug 2006, was based on the true story of two Port Authority officers who were trapped under the rubble at Ground Zero. On 10 and 11 Sep 2006, ABC ran the controversial miniseries The Path to 9/11 , which drew accusations of bias from former members of the Clinton administration. As of Jan 2007, other films about 9/11 in development include 102 Minutes , based on a book by two NYT reporters that chronicles the time between the crash of the first plane and the collapse of the second tower, and Against All Enemies , based on former National Security Council counterterrorism chief Richard Clarke’s memoir. 

Bibliographic Sources:   Date   Page
Backstage West   13 Sep 2006.   
Boston Globe   28 Apr 2006.   
Daily Variety   25 Apr 2006   Section A, p. 1, 14.
Daily Variety   26 Apr 2006.   
Entertainment Weekly   7 Apr 2006   p. 14.
Entertainment Weekly   28 Apr--5 May 2006   pp. 113-14.
Hollywood Reporter   30 Mar 2006.   
Hollywood Reporter   20 Apr 2006.   
Hollywood Reporter   21 Apr 2006.   
Hollywood Reporter   26 Apr 2006.   
Los Angeles Times   9 Apr 2006.   
Los Angeles Times   12 Apr 2006   Calendar, p. 6.
Los Angeles Times   22 Apr 2006.   
Los Angeles Times   26 Apr 2006   Calendar, p. 1, 6.
Los Angeles Times   28 Apr 2006   Calendar, p. 1, 17.
Los Angeles Times   29 Apr 2006.   
Los Angeles Times   1 Jun 2006.   
Los Angeles Times   12 Jan 2007   Calendar, p. 1, 18.
New York Times   1 Jan 2006   Arts, p. 7, 22.
New York Times   24 Apr 2006   Arts, p. 1, 6.
New York Times   28 Apr 2006   Arts, p. 1, 16.
New York Times   7 May 2006.   
Newsweek   1 May 2006.   
Rolling Stone   27 Apr 2006.   
Screen International   28 Apr 2006.   
Time   17 Apr 2006.   
Variety   30 Mar 2006.   
Variety   1 May 2006.   
Variety   10 Jul 2006.   
Village Voice   26 Apr 2006.   
Village Voice   20 Sep 2006.   

Display Movie Summary
The American Film Institute is grateful to Sir Paul Getty KBE and the Sir Paul Getty KBE Estate for their dedication to the art of the moving image and their support for the AFI Catalog of Feature Films and without whose support AFI would not have been able to achieve this historical landmark in this epic scholarly endeavor.
 
Advanced Search
Support our efforts to preserve hisotory of film
Help AFI Preserve Film History

© 2017 American Film Institute.
All rights reserved.
Terms of use.