Ben Zygier: Found dead in an isolation cell in an Israeli prison. Photo: Leigh Henningham
The life and dramatic death of the Australian-born alleged Mossad agent Ben Zygier is set to become a television series.
Zygier was found dead in a purpose-built isolation cell in the maximum security Ayalon Prison in Tel Aviv in 2010.
The series, which has the working title Prisoner X - the name given to Zygier by the Israeli government - has been described by US media as a ''spy thriller take on Thelma & Louise''. It will focus on two women ''struggling to fight for a man who has vanished into the black hole of state imprisonment'' who ''navigate a maze of gag orders and national secrets, turning over stones that reveal terrifying realities about a man they thought they once knew''.
Zygier, who was a dual Australian-Israeli national, was jailed in January 2010 after working for about seven years for intelligence agency Mossad.
It is understood he took his own life in Ayalon Prison.
The Israeli government subsequently paid his family a reported $1.2 million in compensation.
His identity was revealed by the ABC this year; before that Israeli media had complied with a government order not to name him.
Zygier grew up in Melbourne but moved to Israel about 2000.
The television project has generated enormous interest in the US because several Israeli series, notably Prisoners of War, which was adapted into the US series Homeland, have become hits there.
The series will be produced by Britain's Company Pictures, and Israel's Tedy Productions and ADD Content Agency.
Company's credits include Skins, The White Queen, Shameless and Inspector George Gently.
Tedy is the production company behind the new talent format Rising Star, which generated enormous attention at this year's Mipcom market in Cannes, France. However, it has yet to secure an Australian broadcaster.
ADD is a talent agency that represents Israeli writers, directors and actors.
Company Pictures' managing director John Yorke told US media that Israel's television industry had been ''at the forefront of some of the most original and smart television of the past few years. It's a huge privilege to be working with them to be bringing such an exciting idea to the screen''.