British broadcaster ITV and Israeli outfits Drama Team and HOT have begun filming a 10-part thriller TV series called Jerusalem in Israel's Old City, despite a ban on passenger flights in and out of the country.
Israel is currently undergoing a successful vaccination campaign with over a quarter of its 9.2 million people having been vaccinated. But infection rates remain high, with an average of over 8,000 new cases reported every day.
The producers will have strict Covid protocols in place for the series Jerusalem, which is created by David Ackerman (Blank Bullet) and follows the travails of superintendent Amir and his team as they aim to keep the piece and prevent a devastating atrocity in the days leading up to the Jewish fast of Tisha Be’av and the Muslim celebration of Eid al-Adha.
Ilan Abudi (Stockholm) is directing the project, with Chaim Sharir (Hostages, The Grave) and Mosh Danon (What Happened in Oslo) serving as producers.
The cast includes Israeli talent from international hits, including Doron Ben David (Fauda) as Amir, Makram Khoury (Messiah, Homeland, The West Wing, Munich), Rotem Sela (The Chef, The Psychologist, Autonomies), Zvika Hadar (The Pyjamas, Blue Natalie, Shemesh) and Hisham Suliman (Baghdad Central, Fauda, Homeland).
Nadav Hanin, vice president of content and innovation at HOT, said: “HOT continues to solidify its activity in the international content market and Jerusalem is yet another step towards boosting Israeli content's global presence. We are very excited to collaborate with the leading content company ITV Studios on this co-production, which is a vote of confidence in Israeli content. We believe that this show, too, will be loved and well accepted both in Israel and abroad.”
Julie Meldal-Johnsen, EVP Global Content at ITV Studios added: "We're honoured to be working with Mosh, Chaim and HOT on this captivating new series. They have conjured together a fascinating, suspenseful and gripping thriller that will find an immediate place in the canon of acclaimed Israeli drama. The twisting storyline, brilliant cast - in which I include the ancient biblical city of Jerusalem itself - will have a huge draw with audiences worldwide."
Jerusalem will be distributed internationally by ITV Studios. Several of HOT’s original dramas have enjoyed international success, most notably In Treatment, which was remade by HBO.