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May 16, 2012 6:45 am

From Hostage to “Homeland”

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Claire Danes and her husband Hugh Dancy in Jerusalem. Photo: www.goisrael.com.

Freed Hamas captive Gilad Shalit made a surprise visit to the Jaffa-based set of the “Homeland” TV show on Tuesday. Filming for the second season of the award-winning thriller, starring actress Claire Danes, has already begun.

“Homeland” was adapted from the Israeli series “Hatufim” (“Prisoners of War”) and is one of several American TV shows inspired by Israeli programs in recent years. It tells the story of an American soldier released from captivity in Afghanistan and a CIA officer who suspects him of being an al-Qaida turncoat. The Showtime network says the show is the highest-rated new drama series in history.

Small parts of the first season were also shot in Israel, and the second season is scheduled to premiere on Sept. 30.

After Danes and actor Mandy Patinkin arrived at the set, Shalit showed up in a surprise visit and spent most of the day at the site.

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