1969 weaves together rarely-told stories of the moon landing, Manson murders, Chappaquiddick scandal, and Woodstock with that of Nixon’s first year in office, John Lennon’s Bed-Ins for Peace, FBI shootouts with black activists, and the Stonewall Uprising.
The gripping first-hand accounts of how these events came together at the same dizzying, chaotic time is revealed in the six-part series. 1969 premieres Tuesday, April 23 on ABC, featuring an original score composed and produced by multiplatinum producer and Grammy-nominated artist Salaam Remi.
The premiere episode, "Moon Shot," highlights July 1969 when Neil Armstrong, Buzz Aldrin, and Michael Collins traveled to the moon and planted the American flag on the lunar surface, bringing the nation and the world together. Though the billions spent on the moon shot were controversial, especially among civil rights leaders, it would make America the world leader in technology.
Featured in the episode are interviews with Margaret Hamilton, a pioneering female software engineer whose coding made the moon landing possible; Hidden Figures Katherine Johnson and Christine Darden; astronaut Michael Collins who was among the three who strapped themselves to an explosive rocket and hurtled into the unknown; and Charlie Duke and Gerry Griffin, who provided the astronauts a crucial lifeline to Mission Control as they dared to attempt the impossible. Young astronauts and engineers of today look back at why what they did was so incredible, and what we owe them.
The following week’s episode, “The Girl in The Car,” tells the story of Mary Jo Kopechne, whom the powerful Senator Ted Kennedy drove off a bridge after a party and left to die.
1969, Docuseries Premiere, Tuesday, April 23, 10/9c, ABC