Medieval-era action begins production next month

Paul Giamatti has committed to play the tyrant King John in “Ironclad,” a medieval-era action that will begin production in Wales next month. Jonathan English (“Minotaur”) is set to direct and James Purefoy to star.

Scripted by Erick Kastel and English, the drama pits a member of the formidable Knights Templar (Purefoy) and his “Magnificent Seven” cohorts who defend Rochester Castle against King John and his army in 13th century England.

Rick Benattar, who worked with Giamatti in his previous villainous turn in “Shoot ‘Em Up,” will produce alongside Andrew Curtis (“Lost in La Mancha”).

Giamatti is filming “Barney’s Version,” based on Mordecai Richler’s final novel.

He last appeared in helmer-scribe Sophie Barthes’ “Cold Souls.”

Follow @Variety on Twitter for breaking news, reviews and more