Saving Private Ryan, the 1998 Oscar winning war epic from legendary film maker Steven Spielberg, is widely considered to be the most realistic depiction of the D-Day landings ever bought to the screen. A box office smash in the cinemas, no expense was spared in recreating the horror experienced by the American troops on Omaha Beach, and the film’s opening scene has gone down in cinema history as one of the greatest sequences ever made. The film unfolds to tell the story of the daring rescue of Private Ryan, the last surviving brother in his family. But just how accurate really is the landing scene? And was there a real Private Ryan?

In Saving Private Ryan – The True Story, Historians, eye-witnesses and weapons experts reveal amazing new insights into the detail of Spielberg’s graphic depiction of the landings. Veteran Harley Reynolds was one of the first men to make it off Omaha Beach on D-Day and gives us his powerful eyewitness testimony. Pete Niland tells why his family story is thought by many to be the inspiration for the film, and why his uncle is the real Private Ryan. We take to the seas in one of the last surviving landing boats, see the real effects of an exploding mortar shell on the human body and test whether a sniper really can shoot an enemy straight their scope as shown in the film.