Hollywood studio joins television production of Rendlesham UFO saga
- Credit: Archant
A Suffolk mystery that has provided the inspiration for books, documentaries and a feature film is set to be told on television screens.
According to Hollywood media, Sony Pictures Television has joined forces with the production company behind Foyle’s War to develop a drama series based on the Rendlesham UFO Incident.
Eleventh Hour Films enlisted writer and director of TV mini-series The Replacement, Joe Ahearne, to retell the story ‘Britain’s Roswell’, which unfolded outside RAF Woodbridge over two nights in December 1980.
According to American entertainment trade magazine Variety, a complex family drama will form the backdrop to the series, which will also fast-forward from the height of the Cold War to 2020 – the 40th anniversary of the incidents.
Sony Pictures Television is said to be handling distribution of the series, which is yet to find a broadcaster or platform.
The director was quoted as saying: “When Eleventh Hour Films drew my attention to this extraordinary piece of British and American history, it pressed all my buttons, and I think it will do the same for a wide audience.”
Earlier this year, retired US airforce commander Colonel Charles I. Halt revisited the twin bases of Bentwaters and Woodbridge, where he prepared a memo to the Ministry of Defence describing “unexplained lights”, and recorded what became known as the Halt Tape – a documented investigation in the forest, during which he saw mysterious lights like those witnessed by airmen Jim Penniston and John Burroughs two nights earlier.
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In 2010, the ex-colonel signed an affidavit claiming the encounter was extraterrestrial and had been covered up by the government.
Other theories for what happened have included the glow of Orfordness Lighthouse, an elaborate hoax and a secret classified aircraft.
Among those joining Col Halt on his return to Rendlesham was Gary Baker, radar operator at RAF Neatishead from 1978-1980, who claimed to have been told “it never happened” by RAF officers, and that radar tapes and bridge logs from that evening vanished.
Nick Pope, who was formerly in charge of the Ministry of Defence’s UFO project, has previously described the Rendlesham Forest incident “one of the world’s most compelling UFO sightings.