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Last Updated: Saturday, 15 May, 2004, 22:50 GMT 23:50 UK
WWI football truce inspires film
German-born actress Diane Kruger
Actress Diane Kruger will make an unlikely appearance in the film
The story of the Christmas Day truce between British and German soldiers during World War I is to be turned into a film.

In 1914 the two sides left their trenches to play a game of football in no-man's land and the event has become part of wartime folklore.

Details of the film, to be called Merry Christmas, were announced during the Cannes Film Festival.

The film will be a British, German and French co-production in which the characters speak their own languages.

During the truce, in the first year of the war, the soldiers shared cigarettes and sang carols together.

The cast will include British actor Gary Lewis, who played the dad in Billy Elliot, and young German actor Daniel Bruhl, star of the award-winning Goodbye Lenin.

Diane Kruger, who plays Helen of Troy in the Hollywood epic Troy, will also star in the film, as a woman who finds herself in no-man's land through an unlikely set of circumstances.

The Christmas Day truce is also the inspiration for the England football team's official anthem for Euro 2004, which kicks off next month.


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