Breaking news! The BBC has snapped up the UK TV rights to the upcoming eight-part Australian mini-series The Slap, starring SOPHIE OKONEDO.

Based on the award-winning 2008 novel by Christos Tsiolkas, The Slap traces the shattering repercussions of a single event on a group of family and friends when, at an Australian backyard barbecue, a man slaps a child who is not his son. The boy’s parents are so affronted by the assault that they call the police and legal action results. The Slap brings to vivid life questions of parenting, the rights of children, race, class, sexuality and the different perspectives of men and women.

OKONEDO plays Aisha, whose best friend’s child is slapped by her brother-in-law. Entering her forties, Aisha is assailed by doubts about her marriage and future. The slap at the barbecue has left her torn, her loyalties divided between her husband and one of her oldest friends. She co-stars alongside a primarily Australian cast including Melissa George, Essie David, Alex Dimitriades, Jonathan La Paglia and Anthony Hayes.

The AFI Award-winning directors helming each of the eight episodes include Jessica Hobbs, Matthew Saville, Tony Ayres and Robert Connolly.

Made by Matchbox Pictures for ABC TV Australia, The Slap will eventually air on BBC4. BBC spokeswoman Sue Deeks said of the show: “The Slap is a phenomenon, one of those books that everyone seems to be reading. This fine Australian adaptation brings the novel’s keen-eyed dissection of suburban living to the screen with tremendous performances – it is a truly powerful, compelling and thought-provoking watch.”

We’ll let you know as soon as the transmission date has been confirmed. In the meantime, here’s the Australian TV trailer…

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