Quebec's Roy Dupuis to star in Dallaire film

Actor Roy Dupuis, who recently played hockey great Maurice Richard, is set to portray another prominent Canadian figure on the silver screen: Roméo Dallaire.

Actor Roy Dupuis, who recently played hockey great Maurice Richard, is set to portray another prominent Canadian figure on the silver screen: Roméo Dallaire.

An adaptation of Dallaire's award-winning memoir Shake Hands with the Devil is set to begin filming in mid-June in Kigali, Rwanda.

Dupuis will star as the retired Canadian general, whose book details the horrors Dallaire witnessed as head of the UN peacekeeping mission in Rwanda when more than 800,000 people were slaughtered in 100 days in 1994.

One of Quebec's most well-known actors, Dupuismost recently portrayed Maurice (Rocket) Richard in the film The Rocket, released in Quebec last November and across the rest of Canada in April.

He won best actor trophies at both the Genie and Jutra Awards in 2005 for his starring role in Mémoires affectives (Looking for Alexander). Hiscredits range from the Oscar-winning movie The Barbarian Invasions to Canadian-made TV series Nikita.

The film will be directed by Roger Spottiswoode, who was born in Ottawa and raised in Britain. His credits include the award-winning TV movie The Matthew Shepard Story, the James Bond film Tomorrow Never Dies and the futuristic action film The 6th Day.

Published in 2003, Dallaire's book won many accolades, including the 2004 Governor General's Literary Award for Non-Fiction and the 2004 Shaughnessy Cohen Prize from the Writers' Trust of Canada.

Along with searing desciptions of the genocide, Dallaire describes in hismemoirhow the trauma affected his return to civilian life, when he suffered depression and post-traumatic stress disorder.

The bestselling book has already inspired the acclaimed documentary Shake Hands with the Devil: The Journey of Roméo Dallaire by Peter Raymont, who followed the retired soldier on a return trip to Rwanda.

Parts of his story also helped inspire the Hollywood film Hotel Rwanda, in which Nick Nolte portrays a UN commander who is based on Dallaire.

In March 2005, Prime Minister Paul Martin appointed Dallaire to the Senate.