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Comic Kay's new garda movie has Irish stars lining up for roles

Popular British comedian Peter Kay is to star in a new Irish comedy.

Talented Kay, who has sold out venues the length and breadth of Britain and Ireland, is set to star in National Task Force.

The film is expected to be shot on location in Ireland -- and Peter Kay is no stranger to these shores.

The star has visited Our Lady's Hospital for Sick Children in Crumlin on a number of occasions. He was due to pay another visit over Christmas, but was unable to make it because of bad weather.

Kay appeared on the Late Late Show last year and performed an impromptu version of his hit song Is This The Way To Amarillo before running up into the studio audience, and dragging a female friend down to the set to huge laughter and applause from the audience.

If the project gets financing in place, it is set to go into pre-production in April. Hollywood stars Colin Farrell and Colm Meaney, who starred together in hit Irish film Intermission, have also been linked to the project.

Co-writer Anthony Whelan says the film currently has 60pc of the finance needed, but he is hopeful the remainder will be sourced by March.

Comedian and Mrs Brown star Brendan O'Carroll has already been secured by the production company to star in and direct the movie. O'Carroll has worked with Kay on a number of occasions and the pair are friends.

"We are in talks with Colm Meaney, Allen Leech, Ed Speleers, Pete Morgan, Myia Elliott, and are hoping to also get Colin Farrell and Pauline McLynn," said Whelan.

And Boyzone singer and Coronation Street star Keith Duffy has also been linked to the project.

National Task Force is essentially a buddy comedy, but has some very serious undertones and centres around a garda whose partner was murdered. His grief and sorrow means he will do anything for revenge.

"The story is based around Detective Charles Malloy, whose partner was recently murdered whilst uncovering a drugs operation in the Republic, run by suspected drug lord Craig Cain," Whelan explains.

"Malloy, while successful in his duties as a Garda detective, becomes incensed when he hears that the department has dropped the investigation into the murder of his ex-partner."

His new, wise-cracking partner is unaware of his partner's gripes but soon finds out just how incensed Detective Malloy is and the lengths he is willing to go to for vengeance.

hnews@herald.ie