Channel 4 commissions ‘Hurndall’

Pic shoots in Jordan

Blighty’s Channel 4 has commissioned a TV pic about British peace activist Tom Hurndall, killed by an Israeli sniper in 2003 as he tried to protect three Palestinian children being used as human shields.

The as-yet-untitled film, which has started lensing in Jordan, is helmed by Rowan Joffe and stars Matthew McNulty as Hurndall and Stephen Dillane as his father, a lawyer who took on the Israeli military to persuade them to accept responsibility for the shooting.

Kerry Fox is cast as Hurndall’s mother, Jocelyn, who wrote a biography of her son, “Defy the Stars: The Life and Tragic Death of Tom Hurndall.” In June 2005, Israeli soldier Taysir Hayb was convicted of Hurndall’s manslaughter. He was sentenced to eight years in prison, the longest sentence an Israeli soldier has been given for killing a civilian since the start of the second Palestinian uprising in 2000.

U.K. shingle Talkback Thames is producing the film, which Channel 4 will air next year.

Script is by Simon Block and the executive producer is Charles Furneaux, whose credits include mountain-climbing docu-drama “Touching the Void.”

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