UK actor Ian Holm is to play Napoleon in FilmFour's The Emperor's New Clothes, a historical fantasy being produced by The Full Monty's Uberto Pasolini and directed by Palookaville's Alan Taylor.

Pasolini's UK production outfit Redwave Films confirmed that Holm, whose credits include The Madness Of King George, is to appear alongside Iben Hjejle of High Fidelity and Mifune.

Adapted from the novel The Death Of Napoleon, the story tells how Napoleon did not die in exile but returned to France in disguise to reclaim his throne. On his return, Napoleon finds that the battleground of Waterloo has become a theme park and that Paris asylums are full of delusional Bonapartes.

The UK's FilmFour is financing the project, which is set to shoot from September on location in Italy for nine weeks. James Wilson, deputy head of production at FilmFour, brought the project to the company.