Liam Neeson will star in Widows

Liam Neeson will star in Widows

Liam Neeson is set to star in 'Widows'.

The 64-year-old actor has reportedly been cast in the upcoming thriller, which will be directed by director Steve McQueen, and is rumoured to play the role of Viola Davis' on-screen husband in the production, according to Empire Online.

The Northern Ireland-born star will appear in the movie alongside Michelle Rodriguez, 38, Andre Holland, 37, Daniel Kaluuya, 27, and Elizabeth Debicki, 26.

The original series - which was followed by two more outings in 1985 and 2002 - told the story of four women whose criminal husbands died in the middle of robbing a security van after it caught fire.

The group eventually track down the cash for themselves - but then one of the women discovers her husband never died.

'Gone Girl' writer Gillian Flynn - who previously worked with the director on 'Codes of Conduct', an HBO series that has now been shelved - is writing the script for 'Widows', which is set in Chicago, rather than the original London, but is said to be very respectful of the original series.

'Widows' will be McQueen's first new movie since his Oscar-winning effort '12 Years a Slave'.

The project is set to receive backing from Film4 and New Recency.

Meanwhile Cynthia Erivo, who has confirmed she will star in Widows', initially thought it was a "joke" when the 47-year-old filmmaker offered her the role of Belle in his upcoming big-screen adaptation of Linda La Plante's 1983 TV miniseries, and she wants him to see her award-winning performance as Celie in 'The Color Purple' on Broadway so she knows he is serious about his casting choice.

Speaking previously, she said: "I said I'd love to play the role - fantastic! But can he [McQueen] see the show, so I know that it's not, like, a joke!'

"To be offered a role, without having to read for it, is just crazy! And awesome."

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