EXCLUSIVE: Fortissimo Films has acquired international rights to Terence Davies’ Sunset Song, which has secured Peter Mullan and Agyness Deyn to head the cast.

Deyn received acclaim for her West End performance in The Leisure Society earlier this year, while Mullan was most recently seen in Steven Spielberg’s War Horse.

The film, based on the 1932 Scottish novel of the same name by Lewis Grassic Gibbon, is scheduled to start shooting towards the end of the year. Davies and Bob Last of Ecosse Holdings have been jointly developing the project since they worked together on Davies’ 2000 House Of Mirth.

It will be produced by Sol Papadopoulos and Roy Boulter of Hurricane Films, the production company behind Davies’ documentary Of Time And The City, with Last executive producing.

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Set in the early 20th century against the backdrop of poverty in North-East Scotland, the story follows a farmer’s daughter, Chris Guthrie, struggling for love amid hardship and family misfortune.

Actress Agyness Deyn said: “When I read the script I fell completely in love with the character and the story, I’m so honoured and excited to be working with Terence, he’s such an incredible director. I can’t wait to get started and just hope that I can do Chris Guthrie justice.”

The deal with Fortissimo was negotiated by the producers and Fortissimo’s London-based vice president of acquisitions Courtney Noble.