Amid impeachment turmoil, HBO OKs Watergate series
U.S. cable channel HBO on Thursday green-lit the production of a new limited series based on the Watergate scandal that brought down President Richard Nixon, starring Woody Harrelson and Justin Theroux.
The two actors — HBO veterans — will also executive produce “The White House Plumbers,” which is to be written by Alex Gregory and Peter Huyck, who scripted the network’s award-winning comedy “Veep.”
The announcement comes as Washington is again in the throes of an impeachment inquiry against U.S. President Donald Trump, some 45 years after Nixon resigned to avoid a certain trial before U.S. lawmakers.
“Veep” alumni David Mandel will direct the show, HBO told AFP.
The series takes its name from a secret task force set up by the Nixon administration, whose members at one point posed as plumbers.
The unit’s men broke into the Democratic Party’s offices in the Watergate Hotel in Washington in the spring of 1972 to plant microphones.
The series will focus on E. Howard Hunt (Harrelson) and G. Gordon Liddy (Theroux), the administration officials who coordinated the effort.
After five of their men were arrested, Hunt and Liddy were snared and eventually given stiff prison terms.
The fallout from the Watergate arrests, together with Nixon’s attempt to obstruct the investigation, led to his resignation in August 1974, before his impeachment proceedings could reach their conclusion.
The Watergate scandal is familiar fodder for American movies and television series, the most famous being Alan Pakula’s 1976 film “All the President’s Men,” which won four Oscars.
Harrelson, who starred in HBO’s “True Detective,” has been nominated for three Oscars. Theroux starred in HBO’s “The Leftovers.” NVG