Hijackers mess with the wrong passengers in this white-knuckle thrill ride starring Ned Beatty, Dee Wallace Stone and Kristina Wayborn. A one-hour flight turns into a traveler's worst nightmare when a Detroit-bound DC-10 is hijacked by four armed terrorists and ordered to fly to London. Watching helplessly as their fellow hostages are executed in cold blood, the remaining passengers scheme to retake the plane and avenge the victims themselves. Shot on the same jumbo jet soundstage as the Airport movies, Hostage Flight was sent back into production when the climactic scene between the terrorists and passengers was deemed too horrific to air. Hostage Flight remains one of the most controversial - and prophetic - TV movies in broadcast history.
Made for television, HOSTAGE FLIGHT fomented a well-publicized controversy when first aired by NBC on November 17, 1985. On a domestic flight headed for Detroit, 65 passengers are held hostage by four international terrorists. The demands of the hijackers are simple: Release their imprisoned leader or the hostages will be executed one by one. Only after innocent blood is shed do the outraged passengers form a united front to rebel against their captors, and, ultimately, to take justice in their own hands. The film's original ending found the passengers, having staged their own "trial" of the hijackers, doling out punishment in a gruesome manner (and a highly unlikely manner, given the limited head-space on a typical jetliner). This denouement proved too horrifying for the NBC executives, who demanded that a modified ending be filmed (though the original climax was shown when the film was released outside the United States).
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