Entertainment & Arts

Julian Assange asylum inspires BBC sitcom

Kayvan Novak and Julian Assange Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption Novak (left) previously played a hapless would-be terrorist in the comedy Four Lions

Julian Assange's prolonged sojourn at the Ecuadorian embassy in London has inspired a new BBC Four sitcom.

Asylum is described "a satirical comedy about a government whistle-blower and a millionaire internet entrepreneur trapped together in a London embassy".

Four Lions actor Kayvan Novak will star in the show, which he conceived with his Fonejacker producer Tom Thostrup.

WikiLeaks founder Assange has been in Ecuador's central London embassy for more than two years.

He initially took refuge there in 2012 to avoid extradition to Sweden, where he faces charges of sexual assault.

Asylum forms part of a series of shows created to mark the 800th anniversary of the Magna Carta's signing.

The Taking Liberties season includes a day of debate, a documentary filmed inside the House of Commons and a series on the struggle to win votes for women.

Tony Hall, the BBC's director general, said he was "delighted" to announce a season "examining what Magna Carta's key themes of freedom, power and justice mean to Britain and the world today".

The corporation, he said, "should be the place where the great events in our nation's history are commemorated".

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