English-Irish actress Anna Friel has signed on to join the cast of the much-anticipated new crime movie, “London Boulevard.”
Friel is set to play the sister of a criminal played by Colin Farrell, reports Variety.
Keira Knightley is to star in the film, while British actors Ray Winstone and David Thewlis, Friel’s partner, have also signed on for roles.
“London Boulevard” tells the story of a newly paroled criminal (Farrell) who becomes romantically involved with a reclusive actress (Knightley).
The film noir is set in contemporary London, and follows a criminal’s attempts to separate himself from his sordid past as he becomes wrapped up in the life of a mysterious, seductive actress.
Winstone will play a former crime boss, while Thewlis will portray the actress’ agoraphobic business manager.
The film will be directed by Oscar winning writer of “The Departed,” William Monahan, who will make his directorial debut with the project.
The addition of Friel, a heavyweight English actress with Irish blood, to the cast ensures “London Boulevard” will be a hit.
Friel has long captured audiences with her charm. She is best known for her quirky, Golden Globe-nominated role in ABC’s offbeat, if slightly morbid, comedy “Pushing Daisies,” which followed a man who can bring people back to life, if only for a minute, and uses this talent to solve mysteries.
Although the show was cancelled after struggling through the 2007-2008 Writers Guild strike, Friel was a hit as the female lead Charlotte “Chuck” Charles, Ned’s love interest.
Friel was born in Rochdale, Lancashire, England on July 12, 1976. At the age of 13, she was hired for her first professional acting job in the Channel 4 drama serial “G.B.H.”
In 1995, Friel won the National Television Award for Most Popular Actress for her work on “Brookside.”
In 1998 she appeared in the original Broadway run of “Closer” by Patrick Marber, winning a Drama Desk Award and a Theatre World award for her performance as Alice.
In 2001, she made her West End debut in a production of “Lulu” which later transferred to Broadway.
Friel may well get her knack for musical theater in part from her Irish father, Des, who like her mother, is a teacher, but also dabbles in folk guitar.