SUNSHINE on Leith, the hit musical based on The Proclaimers’ songs, is to be turned into a film with David Tennant and Billy Connolly tipped for key roles.
A huge song and dance routine will be filmed on Calton Hill in Edinburgh this autumn, with as many as 1,000 extras taking part.
Former Dr Who star Tennant has already expressed his interest in the role, and it is understood producers are keen to draft in Annie Lennox and the “Big Yin.”
Tennant is a huge fan of the band, highlighting them in an appearance on Desert Island Discs.
Though casting has yet to take place, it is hoped the film will debut at the Edinburgh film festival next year.
The musical had its stage debut in 2007 at Dundee Rep, and follows the fortunes of two Scottish squaddies returning to Leith from Afghanistan.
Written by River City creator Stephen Greenhorn, it tells of how one finds the love of his life and the other loses the girl he left behind.
The film is being made by husband and wife team Arabella Page Croft and Kieran Parker of Black Camel Pictures, who previously made a trilogy of Nazi zombie films.
Trainspotting producer Andrew Macdonald also invested in the project through his company DNA Films.
Mrs Croft said: “We want it to be one of those high quality British films that people come out to see because it makes them feel good about being Scottish or British.
“If we can achieve that we will be delighted. It is a feel good Scottish movie, dealing with a tough subject but dealing with it in a humorous, warm, loving way and hopefully people will embrace that.”
Black Camel Pictures is responsible for the Outpost trilogy of Nazi zombie films.
She added: “Having just got really good at blood, weapons, armoured vehicles and prosthetics, it will be a new challenge to deal with the choreography, but it will be really good fun to deal with dancers instead of zombies.”
Mr Parker said: “We always try to think where a film would sit on your video or DVD shelf and this one (Sunshine on Leith) will sit slap bang between Once and Mamma Mia and beside Grease, Singin’s in the Rain and West Side Story.”
The film will feature large dance routines around Edinburgh.
Craig Reid, one half of The Proclaimers, said he hopes the band will be able to make a cameo appearance despite a busy tour schedule.
He said: “If something was offered and we were available then we would be delighted. Maybe a painter or decorator or a traffic warden.
He said he first thought the musical would be a flop: “We thought they would get half way through making the stage show and then abandon it or, if it did make it to the stage, the halls would be half empty, so we’ve been delighted by the continued success.”