Barkhad Abdi in Talks to Star in Marathon Drama 'The Place That Hits the Sun' (Exclusive)

Barkhad Abdi
Barkhad Abdi
 Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP

It looks like Oscar nominee Barkhad Abdi has found the follow-up to his feature film debut.

The actor is in talks to star in the film The Place That Hits The Sun from producer Noel Pearson (My Left Foot) via his Ferndale Films. Jim O'Hanlon is attached to direct.

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The historical drama follows famous South African marathoner Willie Mtolo, a Zulu warrior, who competed in the 1992 New York Marathon. The story centers on Mtolo and Ray de Vries, a Caucasian bar owner, whose unlikely friendship transcended apartheid South Africa.

Abdi, who was born in Somalia and moved to the U.S. when he was 14, made his film debut in Paul Greengrass' Captain Phillips, playing a ship hijacker in the based-on-a-true-story film starring Tom Hanks. He received a SAG, Golden Globe, BAFTA and Oscar nomination for his work on the film. He's repped by SMS Talent and Morris Yorn.

O'Hanlon has directed several British TV shows including A Touch of Cloth and the TV movie Of Two Minds. He's repped by Resolution and the Artists Partnership in the U.K.

E-mail: Rebecca.Ford@THR.com
Twitter: @Beccamford

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