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Anthony Hopkins and Ian McKellen will work together for the first time in “The Dresser,” an original movie Starz is co-producing with the BBC. Starz made the announcement at the Television Critics Assn. on Friday in Pasadena.

The television adaptation of Ronald Harwood’s World War II-set play of the same name is inspired by Hartwood’s experience of being a dresser for the British actor and manager Sir Donald Wolfit. Hopkins will play Sir and McKellen will portray his dresser, Norman.

The play was previously adapted into a 1983 feature film directed by Peter Yates and starring Albert Finney and Tom Courtenay.

“‘The Dresser’ is a timeless and poignant story about the relationship between artists, and to have this classic play brought to life onscreen by such acting giants as Anthony Hopkins and Ian McKellen is thrilling,” said Starz managing director Carmi Zlotnik.

Richard Eyre will direct. Exec producing are Colin Callender of Playground Entertainment; Sonia Friedman of Sonia Friedman Productions; Polly Hill, BBC head of independent drama; and Ben Stephenson, controller of BBC drama commissioning.

Production begins in London this year.