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Brit star Chiwetel for slave movie

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Chiwetel Ejiofor starred with Angelina Jolie in Salt

Chiwetel Ejiofor starred with Angelina Jolie in Salt

Chiwetel Ejiofor starred with Angelina Jolie in Salt

Chiwetel Ejiofor is set to star as slave Solomon Northup in a film adaptation of his autobiography Twelve Years A Slave.

British actor Chiwetel - who has won an Olivier award for his portrayal of Othello and whose film roles include Inside Man and American Gangster - will apparently play the married and educated free black man, who lived in New York in the 1800s until he was kidnapped and taken into slavery.

Steve McQueen, who co-wrote and directed the award-winning Hunger, is to direct the film and has co-written the screenplay with Three Kings script writer John Ridley, according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Brad Pitt - whose partner Angelina Jolie starred with Chiwetel in Salt - and his company Plan B are to produce the film.

Solomon was living in New York when two men approached him with a job offer in Washington. When he arrived there he was kidnapped and sold as a slave, living under numerous owners until a white carpenter from Canada, who didn't believe in slavery, helped smuggle letters to his wife, initiating a court case that freed him.

He published his autobiography in 1853.

PA