07042015Tue

Last updateTue, 07 Apr 2015 1pm

Shrabani Basu's 'Spy Princess' optioned by LA producers

Los Angeles-based film producers Zafar Hai and Tabrez Noorani have acquired the film rights to Shrabani Basu’s ‘Spy Princess’, the biography of World War 2-era spy Noor Inayat Khan.

‘Spy Princess: The Life of Noor Inayat Khan’ – published in 2006 - tells the remarkable story of the daughter of an Indian Sufi scholar and American mother who went on to become one of a handful of female British spies working for the French Resistance in Nazi-occupied France.

The book details Noor’s life from her birth in Moscow through her recruitment by Britain’s famed Special Operations Executive espionage agency to her death at the hands of the Gestapo at the Dachau concentration camp in 1944.

Zafar Hai, the managing partner of Haimark Films International, is best known as the director of the Merchant Ivory production ‘The Perfect Murder’, starring Naseeruddin Shah and Stellan Skarsgard;

Noorani was a line producer on Danny Boyle’s ‘Slumdog Millionaire’ whilst his company India Take One Productions has worked on films such as Oliver Stone’s ‘Alexander’ and the Mission Impossible films starring Tom Cruise.

‘Spy Princess’ is the second book by Basu to have been optioned for the big screen; rights to her third non-fiction work, ‘Victoria & Abdul: The True Story of the Queen’s Closest Confidant’ were bought by Working Title Pictures in 2011.

A permament memorial to Inayat Khan will be unveiled in London's Gordon Square on November 08 at a ceremony attended by the Princess Royal.

The memorial - a bronze bust by London-based sculptor Karen Newman, follows a decade-long campaign by the Noor Inayat Khan Memorial Trust.

The campaign was led by Shrabani Basu and has received support from high profile individuals including Prime Minister David Cameron, Speaker of the House John Bercow, and Shami Chakrabarti, chairman of the advocacy group Liberty.

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