The Nixon Interviews - Broadcasts


The interviews were broadcast in the US and some other countries in 1977. They were edited into four programs, each 90 minutes long.

In the weeks preceding the interviews with Nixon, David Frost was interviewed by Mike Wallace of CBS's 60 Minutes, the same news organization that Frost had "scooped" (CBS had also been in negotiations to interview Nixon, but Frost outbid them). Frost talked about looking forward to Nixon's "cascade of candor".

The interviews were broadcast in four parts, with a fifth part containing material edited from the earlier parts broadcast months later:

Part Broadcast Content
Part 1 4 May 1977 Watergate
Part 2 12 May 1977 Nixon and the world
Part 3 19 May 1977 War at home and abroad
Part 4 26 May 1977 Nixon, the man
Part 5 10 September 1977 additional material from parts 1-4

The premiere episode drew 45 million viewers, the largest television audience for a political interview in history — a record which still stands today.

In Part 3, Frost asked Nixon about the legality of the president's actions. Nixon replied: "Well, when the president does it, that means that it is not illegal."

Part 5 opened with Frost's blunt question, "Why didn't you burn the tapes?"

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