The short life of Vietnam's young heroic martyr, Nong Van Den alias Kim Dong, is alive again through a new TV series produced by private film companies in Ho Chi Minh City.

The Minh Film and Hanh Tinh Xanh companies invested a great deal of money to portray Kim Dong, one of the country's youngest heroes, in a big drama series.

The 20-part series, Anh Hung Lang Na Ma (The Hero of Na Ma Village) focuses on Kim Dong's brave and clever activities as a member of the Ho Chi Minh Young Pioneer Organisation, which was founded by the Communist Party of Vietnam and President Ho Chi Minh in 1941.

Kim Dong was born in a poor family from the Nung ethnic minority group of Na Ma village in Cao Bang province.

He was the organisation's first leader when he was 12.

His job was carrying messages and coded letters, and protecting revolutionaries who work in the Viet Bac (Northernmost Vietnam Revolutionary Base) during the French war.

He and his staff of four members face challenges and dangerous enemies, but finally complete their mission. He died on duty when he was 14.

"Kim Dong is a popular icon in Vietnam's history and culture. Making a film about the hero has been one of my career's biggest challenges and my staff and I tried our best to make the film as lively as possible," said Nguyen Duy Vo Ngoc, the film's director.

Ngoc spent days working with scriptwriter Song Minh to perfect the film's script. He has collected and researched documents and books on Kim Dong, including stories told by Na Ma's patriarchs.

"Kim Dong is not only a young hero in the hearts of the ethnic minority people but also a literary icon," he said. "Many songs and poems featured the hero as a son of Tay Bac region who shows his love for the country and its people, and fights for peace through poetic words."

Ngoc and his actors travelled to the Tay Bac region and asked the village patriarchs of Nung ethnic minority group to improve their knowledge of the hero.

"My biggest challenge is how to portray the spirit of Kim Dong," said Ngoc, who worked hard on the casting of leading roles.

He said he chose schoolboy Duc Huy for playing Kim Dong because "both of his appearance and acting skills."

The film is broadcast on HTV7 channel every night, except Sunday, at 9.30pm, leaving a very strong impression on viewers.-VNA