Steven Spielberg has recruited Australian actor Eric Bana to star in his new movie focusing on Israeli retribution following the terrorist attack on the 1972 Olympic Games in Munich.

The Troy hunk will play the leading Israeli secret service agent alongside compatriot Geoffrey Rush, whose role has yet to be confirmed.

Palestinian terrorist group Black September's attack left 11 Israeli athletes dead - and the Saving Private Ryan director is keen to tackle the sensitive subject in a bid to understand the troubles plaguing Israel to this day.

He says, "Viewing Israel's response to Munich through the eyes of the men who were sent to avenge that tragedy adds a human dimension to a horrific episode that we usually think about only in political or military terms.

"By experiencing how the implacable resolve of these men to succeed in their mission slowly gave way to troubling doubts about what they were doing, I think we can learn something important about the tragic standoff we find ourselves in today."

Award-winning playwright Tony Kushner has written the screenplay for Spielberg's project, and actors Daniel Craig, Mathieu Kassovitz, Ciaran Hinds and Hanns Zischler have already signed up to appear in the hard-hitting thriller.

Following the bloody Munich massacre, then Israeli premier GOLDA MEIR order secret service agents to hunt down the terrorists responsible and eliminate them.

05/07/2005 01:55