Page last updated at 14:53 GMT, Tuesday, 2 September 2008 15:53 UK

Tim Roth lands Skellig film role

Tim Roth
Tim Roth leads an all-star cast in the film adaptation

British actor Tim Roth is starring in an adaptation of the award-winning children's novel Skellig.

The Oscar nominee heads a cast which includes Kelly MacDonald and John Simm in the film based on David Almond's 1998 book.

Young Son of Rambow actor Bill Milner stars as Michael, the boy who discovers the magical creature Skellig.

The two-hour film will premiere on Sky1 and Sky1 HD in Spring 2009 and will later be released in cinemas worldwide.

Filming has already begun and will principally be shot on location in and around Cardiff with Caerphilly Castle, Wenalt Woods in Caerphilly Mountains and Canada Lakes in Llantrisant providing some of the landscapes Almond's novel depicted.


The movie is the first project to commence production from Sky1's new 10m drama investment fund.

"David Almond's much-loved novel is the perfect production to showcase Sky1's drama ambitions," said Sarah Conroy, commissioning editor for drama.

She added the film's production team had "delivered an exceptional script that has attracted some of the best on-screen talent and we know this project will appeal to the child in all of us".

Roth will take the title role as the part-owl, part-angel Skellig who is discovered in a ramshackle shed.

MacDonald, who received an Oscar nomination this year for No Country for Old Men, will play Michael's mother, while Life on Mars' Simm will play his dad.

Skellig tells the story of a young boy who discovers the strange creature after moving house and nourishes him back to health, while his baby sister is gravely ill in hospital.

The book was awarded the Carnegie Medal in Literature in 1998 and also won the Whitbread Children's Book of the Year Award the same year.

In 2007, the Carnegie Medal judges also selected it as one of the 10 most important children's novels of the past 70 years.

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