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James Nesbitt heads Iraq war drama

By Maureen Coleman

Northern Ireland actor James Nesbitt is to head the cast of a powerful new BBC drama about the war in Iraq.

The Coleraine-born actor will play Sergeant Mike Swift in Occupation, which follows three soldiers from the invasion of Basra in 2003 to the present day.

The drama reveals how the lives of the three British men are shaped and transformed by their experiences.

Nesbitt is joined by Stephen Graham (This Is England) as Corporal Danny Peterson and Warren Brown (Hollyoaks) as Lieutenant Corporal Lee Hibbs.

Alongside them is a strong international cast including Igal Naor (House of Saddam) and Lubna Azabal (Paradise Now).

Penned by award-winning writer Peter Bowker and made by Kudos Film, Occupation will be shot on location in Northern Ireland and Morocco.

Announcing the cast line-up, Peter Bowker said: “I’m thrilled that we have cast two of the country’s finest actors in James Nesbitt and Stephen Graham as the two more senior soldiers. It means that we are in very safe hands.”

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