5:00am PT by Lesley Goldberg
ISIS Drama Series Set at Nat Geo Channel
National Geographic Channel and the U.K.'s Channel 4 are teaming to create a scripted drama series inspired by the militant group ISIS.
The untitled four-part project will be written and directed by Peter Kosminsky, the Golden Globe winner behind Warriors and Emmy-nominated helmer of Wolf Hall.
The co-production is described as a compelling fictional story based on extensive research and first-hand accounts. It will follow four British men and women who leave their lives behind to join ISIS in Raqqah, Syria.
The series, which is set to premiere in 2017 on Nat Geo and Channel 4 in the U.K., is produced by Archery Pictures. A cast is not yet attached.
"After a year of extensive research, Peter has written a fascinating fictional story that sheds light on an unknown and unimaginable world," Channel 4 drama head Beth Willis said Wednesday in a statement. "This is a deeply authentic drama through which we are able to question and confront an incredibly complex, divisive and urgent global issue. I’m delighted to be partnering with National Geographic and Archery Pictures to bring Peter’s brilliant work to audiences in the U.K. and worldwide.”
The drama was developed by Channel 4 and commissioned by Piers Wenger and Willis. Archery's Liza Marshall and Kris Thykier will executive produce.
“National Geographic has always been on the forefront of covering the complexities of war in our documentary features and series,” said Carolyn Bernstein, executive vp and head of global scripted development and production at Nat Geo. “Peter’s scripts take that same bold, unblinking approach to telling the fact-based stories of young ISIS recruits and offer an authentic and nuanced look inside one of the most serious global threats we face today.”
Kosminsky's recent credits include BBC's Wolf Hall, which in addition to winning a Golden Globe also scored a BAFTA award for best drama series and a best actor nod for star Mark Rylance. The untitled ISIS drama becomes the latest Channel 4 project for Kosminsky, who also created drama Blitz, about a British Muslim family who are pulled in different directions following Sept. 11, as well as The Promise, a love story set against the conflict between Israel and Palestine. He is repped by UTA.
For Nat Geo, a joint venture between 21st Century Fox and the National Geographic Society, the ISIS drama marks its latest scripted foray since joining the originals fray in April with anthology Genius and Ron Howard. Nat Geo in January announced a new roster of scripted fare in the works after finding success with Bill O'Reilly's Killing miniseries.