BBC2 has commissioned a new original drama series Englistan, created by Riz Ahmed and produced by BBC Studios Drama London in association with Left Handed Films.

An original 9×60’ drama, Englistan is the story of three generations of a British Pakistani family, the Latifs: Jamal and Fatima, their children Ashraf, Razia and Asim, and their grandchildren Zahed, Naseem and Ayesha. The drama follows them  over four decades, navigating shifting circumstances and evolving loyalties.

Englistan is billed as a drama that will “re-frame recent British history, and shine a light on the forces that have made our society what it is today.”

Creator Riz Ahmed said: “I’m excited to be working with Esther Springer and all the team at BBC Studios. Englistan is an untold British story with universal themes and resonance. It’s the story I always wanted to tell, and it’s a privilege to have the opportunity to do so.”

Patrick Holland, Controller of BBC Two, said: “Riz Ahmed is a phenomenal talent and Englistan promises to be a hugely ambitious, layered and resonant drama about family and identity. New writing, massive canvas, the biggest issues; it is a perfect drama for BBC Two.”

Piers Wenger, Controller of BBC Drama, said: “Set against the familiar backdrop of the late 20th 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. We are honoured to be working with Riz on this epic, deeply personal story.”

Esther Springer, BBC Studios Executive Producer, adds: “It is an honour to work on such an ambitious and powerful story, created by Riz Ahmed whose vision for this drama is so clear, so focused and so beautiful. I’m thrilled Patrick Holland, Piers Wenger and Lucy Richer have committed to telling this important story and made BBC Two Englistan’s home.”

Englistan has been commissioned by Patrick Holland, Controller of BBC Two, and Piers Wenger, Controller of BBC Drama. Executive Producers are Riz Ahmed for Left Handed Films, Esther Springer and Hilary Salmon for BBC Studios Drama London and Lucy Richer for BBC Two.

Jon Creamer

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