Casting underway on thriller produced by Shine, New Regency, Paul Webster and Tracey Seaward.

Screenwriter Steve Knight (Dirty Pretty Things, Eastern Promises) is to make his feature debut with revenge thriller Hummingbird, which he has also written.

Co-produced by Shine, Paul Webster (Brighton Rock, Atonement) and Tracey Seaward (The Queen, Dirty Pretty Things), and backed by New Regency Productions, Hummingbird is the story of an ex-special forces soldier, trapped in a criminal underworld, who seeks revenge on his enemies when presented with an opportunity to take on another man’s identity.

Casting is underway on the film, which is expected to start shooting in autumn 2011 and will be distributed worldwide by 20th Century Fox.

Hummingbird reunites Knight with Webster and Seaward after they previously collaborated on Oscar-nominated Eastern Promises.

Shine Pictures optioned the rights to the film, with the deal negotiated by Paula Jalfon, Senior VP, Production, Shine Pictures and Eric Roth, Executive VP, Business Affairs, New Regency, with Brian Siberell (CAA) and Natasha Galloway (United Agents).

Knight said: “Hummingbird is a genuine passion project for me. I believe the story is timely, and the characters are drawn from a city full of broken lives and sudden opportunities. It is about redemption and love in a rarely seen urban underworld, and even the romance is forbidden. This is a story I have wanted to tell for many years and I am thrilled to have the opportunity to direct it.”