'Dragon Tattoo' Star Michael Nyqvist Joins Laurence Fishburne in BET's Nelson Mandela Miniseries (Exclusive)

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Michael Nyqvist

The actor will play a former South African prime minister in the biopic, which also stars Orlando Jones.

Michael Nyqvist has boarded BET Network's six-part miniseries Madiba, joining co-stars Laurence Fishburne and Orlando Jones.

The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo star will play Dr. H.F. Verwoerd, the prime minister of Apartheid-era South Africa from 1958 until his assassination in 1966. Kevin Hooks (Prison Break, Passenger 57) is directing Madiba, based on optioned books by the late Nelson Mandela.

Fishburne will portray Mandela; Jones will play Oliver Tambo, president of the African National Congress; and David Harewood (Homeland) has been cast as Walter Sisulu, secretary-general of the African National Congress. Madiba is being produced by Blue Ice Pictures, Left Bank Pictures and South Africa's Out of Africa Entertainment.

Mandela's grandson, Kweku Mandela, is executive producing for Out of Africa. The project follows BET Networks' airing of another Canadian miniseries, The Book of Negroes, a slave trade drama from Conquering Lion Pictures, Out of Africa Entertainment and Entertainment One Television, which starred Cuba Gooding Jr., Louis Gossett Jr. and Aunjanue Ellis.

Madiba is set to premiere on BET Networks in the U.S. in 2017 and is being distributed worldwide by Dynamic Television.

Nyqvist starred as Mikael Blomkvist in the original Swedish Girl With the Dragon Tattoo trilogy, with Noomi Rapace. He was last seen in Lionsgate’s John Wick, co-starring with Keanu Reeves, and Paramount’s Mission: Impossible — Ghost Protocol, opposite Tom Cruise. The actor will next be seen opposite Pierce Brosnan in the hacker thriller I.T., directed by John Moore.

"The addition of Michael Nyqvist to our accomplished cast adds a further global appeal to a very global story," Lance Samuels, president of Blue Ice Pictures, said Monday in a statement. Production on Madiba continues in Johannesburg, Cape Town and Robben Island, South Africa, through mid-June.

Executive producer credits are shared by Samuels, Daniel Iron, Neil Tabatznik, Steven Silver, Andy Harries and Loretha Jones. Madiba was written by Paul Webb, Jane Maggs, Janine Eser and Kathleen McGhee-Anderson.

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