EXCLUSIVE: HBO Films has hired war correspondent-turned-documentary filmmaker Greg Barker to helm A Rope And A Prayer, a film about the kidnapping by the Taliban of two-time Pulitzer Prize-winning New York Times foreign correspondent David Rohde. Rohde wrote the book with his wife Kristen Mulvihill, a photo editor at Cosmopolitan Magazine. They had only been married two months when Rohde was taken into captivity by the Taliban in 2008 en route to an interview with a Taliban leader, in Afghanistan. She banged on the door of every journalist, politician and even the Taliban to try and free him. HBO also acquired Rohde’s five-part series written for the newspaper shortly after he and an Afghan colleague used a car tow line to drop from a wall and escape.
Michelle Ashford, whose credits include HBO’s The Pacific, is writing the script. Michael London and Janice Williams will produce for Groundswell Productions. Barker, who directed the docus Koran By Heart and Sergio for HBO, is repped by Gersh and Parallax Talent Management. ICM brokered the deal for Rohde and The New York Times.