In an age of economy-class hell, the development of a passenger airliner might not seem the most exciting subject for a televised series.

Wind back more than half a century to the supersonic Concorde, though, and the ingredients are there: drama, espionage, glamour, heroes and — hard to believe now — Anglo-French triumph over the two superpowers of the age.

That is the belief of Klaus Zimmermann, a German producer based in France, whose Dynamic Television company is putting together an ambitious fictional series that tells the tale of the people behind the aircraft.

The multi-million-dollar show will culminate with Concorde’s entry into service with British Airways and Air France in 1976, months before the short-lived Soviet copy, the Tupolev Tu-144. It will not cover the airliner’s demise as a commercial failure in 2003, after the 2000 Paris disaster that killed 113 people.

The Queen traveled by Concorde after her Silver Jubilee tour of Canada and the West Indies, 1977.

“There’s so much to tell about this crazy endeavor. It was basically a blank check from the politicians and it looked like it would change the world,” Zimmermann said. “This is the story of how they got this plane going and the people who made it happen.”

Although only the British and French airlines eventually bought the slender Mach 2 jet, about 20 airlines had provisionally ordered more than 100 of them when it first flew in 1969.

The producer believes that the global success on Apple TV of Drops of God, a wine business thriller made by his company, shows there is an appetite for drama with a positive theme.

At huge cost to the taxpayer, the British Aircraft Corporation and France’s Sud Aviation beat American and Russian competition to prevail in the race that began in the Fifties to fly passengers faster than sound.

An aerial view of Concorde 002, the second Anglo-French supersonic airliner.

“There will be some surprises and twists. There was a lot of sabotage and espionage. It touches on many genres. There’s a spy story. There’s a societal story too because it’s the shift between the Sixties and Seventies, which was a social revolution. It’s a breakthrough in technology. It’s an industrial adventure,” he said.

“It was basically a blank check from the politicians and it looked like it would change the world.”

The spying was done by the Russians, who stole the Concorde’s plans to build the Tupolev and the sabotage was mainly the work of the Americans, who tried to thwart the European jet after Boeing pulled out of the supersonic race. “Nobody outside the French and the British wanted the Concorde to be a success,” said Zimmermann.

Alain Delon and Sylvia Kristel in the thriller The Concorde … Airport ’79.

There will be “spectacular” flying and thriller action but nothing like the wild antics of the only other fiction to star the plane — The Concorde … Airport ’79. In that Hollywood disaster movie, Alain Delon, the French screen idol playing the captain, flies the Concorde upside down to escape missiles. Sylvia Kristel, star of the Emmanuelle erotic movies, was also in the cast, along with Robert Wagner.

“It won’t be as crazy as The Right Stuff. We’ll not be doing Top Gun but it will be something breathtaking too,” Zimmermann, 57, said.

The heroes will include the late Brian Trubshaw and André Turcat, the chief test pilots on the unlikely French-British joint project, who were stars and household names in the Sixties and early Seventies.

The series, which has not been cast yet and is due to start shooting in 2025, will center on a female lead character who has been invented for 21st-century sensibilities.

Test pilots André Turcat and Brian Trubshaw after the Concorde 001 makes its first public appearance, in Toulouse, France, 1967.

“The challenge is that this was a male-dominated world similar to Mad Men and it will be played between engineers, pilots and the people working on the marketing on the commercial side,” Zimmermann said. Putting fictional characters into a real story always means “walking a thin line”, he added. If The Crown managed to pull it off “then you can certainly do it with the Concorde,” he said.

The series is being written by Stéphane Cabel, a French screenwriter. The director will be Thomas Vincent, who made the BBC1 Bodyguard series and was one of the directors of Versailles, the 2016 series shown on BBC2.

Financing the budget of “tens of millions of euros” is under way for the series, which will be shot in several languages. Zimmermann, who was an executive producer of the BBC’s Sinking of the Laconia, a two-part drama in 2011, is aiming at traditional television markets as well as streaming platforms.

Charles Bremner is the Paris correspondent for The Times of London