The White House Plumbers, HBO - Woody Harrelson, Justin Theroux, drama

The Watergate Scandal that rocked America in the 1970s makes for good dramas- from the classic film All The President’s Men to last year’s Julia Roberts’ Starz miniseries Gaslit. Now, it’s HBOs turn to get in on the act, with a miniseries of their own slated for release this March.

Starring Woody Harrelson and Justin Theroux, The White House Plumbers will tell the true story of Nixon’s team of political saboteurs who accidentally brought down the government they were trying to keep in place. Want something to get stuck into now? Check out our Culture Section or true crime doc round-up.

The “Plumbers” were a real-life team of people, led by lawyer G. Gordon Liddy (played by Justin Theroux in the series), and were tasked with finding out who was leaking classified government information to the press and preventing it from happening or responding to the leak. Liddy was assisted in the plumbers team and in his Watergate activities by E. Howard Hunt (portrayed by Woody Harrelson), and both would later be charged with crimes including burglary, wiretapping and conspiracy. The team would eventually be exposed, along with the illegal actions of the government, in part because of their desperation trying to cover up their own actions. The White House Plumbers is being developed by some of the same people who worked on HBO’s Veep and Succession, and is based on the 2007 book Integrity, which was recently republished under the same title as the show- so expect plenty of snappy dialogue.

Given the meaty subject matter and dramatic potential, HBO has given the miniseries a sizeable cast of big names: the two leads will be joined by Domnhall Gleeson, who recently appeared in FX series The Patient, Lena Headey, star of HBO’s own Game of Thrones and Kiernan Shipka (Chilling Adventures of Sabrina) are all attached. There’s also Ike Barinholtz (The Unbearable Weight of Massive Talent), F Murray Abraham (The White Lotus), Kathleen Turner (Peggy Sue Got Married) and John Caroll Lynch (who also appeared in Gaslit). Gleeson plays John Dean, another official implicated in the scandal, and Headey plays Dorothy Hunt, the wife of Harrelson’s character who was killed in a plane crash, leading to conspiracy theories.

An official trailer for The White House Plumbers was recently unveiled by HBO, with Gleeson’s John Dean summing things up in the opening line: “The president needs men of action… …to make sure he wins this election.” There’s a montage of men in suits working in the dark to covertly sabotage the opposition campaign, and despite a warning to Liddy and Hunt to “not get caught”, there are glimpses of the scandal being exposed and the house of cards coming crashing down- all to the sound of Santana’s “Evil Ways.” The series is coming to HBO in March, and will almost certainly be arriving on Sky Atlantic in the U.K., though an exact release date is not yet known.

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