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Shia LaBeouf to play tennis great John McEnroe in biopic

Cannes: Maverick Hollywood actor Shia LaBeouf is to play the original tennis rebel John McEnroe in a new film about his rivalry with the Swedish star Bjorn Borg, the producers said yesterday.

Shia Labeouf during a photocall at the 69th Cannes Film Festival in France yesterday. Pic/AFP
Shia Labeouf during a photocall at the 69th Cannes Film Festival in France yesterday. Pic/AFP

"Borg/McEnroe" will follow the two men's epic battles on and off the court through the 1970s and 1980s, the Swedish producers Film Vaest announced at the Cannes film festival.

The fiery American star revolutionised the image of the sport, bringing rockstar petulance to the centre court.

The actor is at Cannes for the premiere Sunday of British director Andrea Arnold's road movie "American Honey", which is vying for the festival's top prize, the Palme d'Or.

John McEnroe
John McEnroe

The producers said the Icelandic actor Sverrir Gudnason will play the "Swedish iceman" Borg with Stellan Skarsgard — who co-starred in "The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo" — cast as his influential coach Lennart Bergelin.

The film will be shot in the autumn in Sweden, London, Monaco and New York.

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