The UK's BBC Films and US cable network HBO are to co-produce a UK-shot war serial about Winston Churchill's isolation in the run-up to the second world war.

Currently in pre-production at Shepperton Studios, A Lonely War is to star Albert Finney as Churchill and Vanessa Redgrave as his wife.

Ridley and Tony Scott are producing the drama, directed by Richard Loncraine. BBC Films chief David Thompson is executive producing. The BBC previously picked up HBO's large-scale war serial Band Of Brothers for its BBC1 channel, before changing tack and deciding to put it out on BBC 2.

A Lonely War will air on BBC 2 next year.