Hollywood A-lister Mark Wahlberg narrowly avoided becoming one of the thousands of people who tragically lost their lives in the 9/11 terror attacks on America.
The Uncharted star, 51, was actually scheduled to fly on American Airlines Flight 11 from Boston to Los Angeles which was hijacked and crashed into the World Trade Center’s North Tower.
However, he decided to leave a week earlier to go and see a friend’s movie at the Toronto Film Festival instead.
The actor spoke about his brush with death, but ended up issuing an apology after suggesting he could have stopped the horrifying events.
Wahlberg suggested he would have stopped the terrorists
Wahlberg once said in an interview with Men’s Journal: “If I was on that plane with my kids, it wouldn’t have went down like it did.
“There would have been a lot of blood in that first-class cabin and then me saying, ‘OK, we’re going to land somewhere safely, don’t worry’.”
He later issued an apology, saying it was an “insensitive” thing for him to have said.
He said in a statement: “To speculate about such a situation is ridiculous to begin with, and to suggest I would have done anything differently than the passengers on that plane was irresponsible.
“I deeply apologize to the families of the victims that my answer came off as insensitive, it was certainly not my intention.”
On September 11, 2001, a series of coordinated terrorist attacks were carried out by the extremist network al-Qaeda.
Directed by leader Osama bin Laden, a group of 19 terrorists hijacked four commercial airlines mid-flight with the goal of crashing the planes into prominent American buildings.
Two planes crashed into the towers of the World Trade Center in New York – commonly called the Twin Towers.
A third hit the Pentagon in Virginia.
The fourth plane was intended to hit a federal government building in Washington DC but crashed in a field outside Pennsylvania after passengers revolted and stopped the attack.
A total of 2,996 people died.
Bin Laden originally denied he was involved in the attacks, saying they’d been “carried out by individuals with their own motivation”.
However, he later recanted his statement and said he had personally directed his followers to attack the World Trade Center and the Pentagon.
He was never formally indicted by the US for the attacks but was on the FBI’s Most Wanted List.
After a 10-year manhunt, then-US President Barack Obama announced bin Laden had been killed by American special forces.