At least one part of the movie "Flight" suggests its story takes place before September 11, 2001:
About 30 minutes into a flight, the pilot played by Denzel Washington exits the cockpit, goes part way into the cabin in view of the passengers, and talks to the passengers over the intercom. If the pilot had done this after 9/11, I think he would have been violating FAA procedure, as after 9/11, pilots must stay in the locked cockpit for the duration of every flight, except to use the bathroom. But after the plane crashes, the investigators never mention the cockpit exit, suggesting it wasn't yet a violation of protocol.
Am I correct that "Flight" took place before September 11, 2001? And is it possible to pin down the precise year in which "Flight" was supposed to take place?
Update 7 May 2013: After looking around the web a bit more, I have learned that pilots do not have to limit themselves to either the cockpit or the bathroom... they just have to make sure that when they leave the cockpit, it is locked behind them. So it was not necessarily a breach of rules for the Denzel character to make the speech to the passengers, even under post-9/11 rules.