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Riz Ahmed to star in ‘Englistan’, BBC series about three generations of an immigrant family

Riz Ahmed has written the series and will possibly direct it.

British actor Riz Ahmed will star in a nine-part television series for BBC titled Englistan, which will explore the story of three generations of a British-Pakistani family over four decades, according to The Hollywood Reporter. Ahmed has written the series and will possibly be directing it.

“It’s set around three generations of British-Pakistani family in the UK, starting in the 1980s and ending up about now,” Ahmed said in 2016. “It’s like a revisionist’s retelling of recent British history, but also the story of a family and their relationships. To me, it’s a very British story.” Ahmed cited Howard Zinn’s book A People’s History of the United States as an inspiration for the project.

The actor had previously written and directed a short film, Daytimer, which was premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in 2015. Ahmed will be seen in Jacques Audiard’s western dark comedy The Sisters Brothers and the Marvel Studios-Columbia Pictures production Venom.

Englistan is being produced by BBC Studios Drama London along with Left Handed Films for BBC Two. “Set against the familiar backdrop of the late 20th century but from a point of view which feels entirely new, Englistan is the story of the birth of multicultural Britain as seen from the inside,” BBC Drama controller Piers Wenger said.

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