The Real Spies Among Friends on SBS – The real story behind the hit drama series A Spy Among Friends starring Damian Lewis and Guy Pearce – this stand-alone documentary on Kim Philby and his fellow traitors who met at Cambridge reveals the worst spy ring in British history.
From Cold War Washington to contemporary Moscow, Beirut backstreets to the salons of Buckingham Palace, the story is as gripping as any thriller.
Kim Philby, Guy Burgess, Donald Maclean, and Anthony Blunt were born to privilege, recruited as sleeper spies for Moscow at Cambridge University in the 1930s, and then insinuated themselves into almost every arm of the British secret state where they were able, without suspicion, to leak secrets to Soviet Russia on an industrial scale – their old school ties effectively blinding the British and US establishments to the traitors in their midst.
This film shows how from D-Day to the atomic bomb, they kept their masters in Moscow informed.
How despite finally being unmasked they never faced justice – instead slipping the closing net and escaping to Moscow or in Blunt’s case being allowed, to avoid a scandal, to carry on as a top adviser to the Queen herself. And how Philby had ‘no regrets’ for the victims he sent to their deaths.
Told by experts including ex-officers from MI5, the CIA and KGB, The Real Spies Among Friends lifts the lid on a shocking chapter in history and gives a dire warning about the ongoing threat of Russian spying.
The leading contributor is Ben Macintyre (Operation Mincemeat!, SAS Rogue Heroes), author of A Spy Among Friends, the non-fiction book behind the drama series of the same name about Kim Philby and Nicholas Elliott. This documentary is entirely separate from the drama series and does not refer to it so can complement the drama or stand entirely alone from it.
The Real Spies Among Friends – Premiere – Monday, 19 June at 8.30pm on SBS and SBS on Demand
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