Colm Meaney to play Martin McGuinness in film on unlikely pals
Colm Meaney has long been a supporter of Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness and now he's set to play him in a new film called The Journey.
The film follows the unlikely friendship that developed between McGuinnness and Dr Ian Paisley when they shared power in Stormont after decades of animosity.
Due to the rapport between the two politicians, they were nicknamed the "chuckle brothers".
English actor Timothy Spall will star opposite Meaney as former Northern Ireland First Minister and DUP leader Paisley.
Spall is known for his roles in Harry Potter, the King's Speech and Sweeney Todd.
According to reports, the plot of the film follows the two men as they take a fictional journey together which leads them to forge a friendship and "take the biggest leap of faith and change the course of modern history".
Their friendship is one of the most unusual ones in modern political history as their parties fought each other for decades during the Troubles.
Upon Dr Paisley's passing last year Mr McGuinness paid tribute to him saying, "Once political opponents - I have lost a friend."
The film is being written by Co Down-born novelist and screenwriter Colin Bateman and Killing Bono's Nick Hamm will direct the flick.
While Liam Neeson and Kenneth Branagh had been rumoured to be in talks for the role, it is fitting that Meaney should play him as he previously put his star status behind McGuinness.
He supported his presidential bid in 2011, and spoke at a rally in Dublin's Mansion House alongside the Sinn Fein MLA.
Shooting is set to start in mid-September in Northern Ireland and Scotland.