‘Pastmaster’ taps Hawthorne

SYDNEY — “The Madness of King George” thesp Nigel Hawthorne has inked to star in “Pastmaster,” a comedy about power, capital punishment and the underbelly of the law.

Skedded to lense in early 1998 in the Western Australian town of Perth, pic, based on a short story by Lloyd Davies, is backed by Perth’s Enterprise Films, the Australian Film Finance Corp. and ScreenWest. Pic, budgeted at around $2.5 million, will be distribbed locally by UIP, while world rights rest with L.A.-based Cascante Entertainment.

Hawthorne is best known for his role in the longrunning BBC-TV political comedies “Yes Minister” and “Yes Prime Minister.”

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