EXCLUSIVE by James Bryce

A STRING of Hollywood stars is being touted to feature in a film that has the Costa del Sol at the centre of the action.

Ralph Fiennes, Philip Seymour Hoffman and James Spader have all been approached to play the lead role in The Enigmatic Mr Phelps, based on a series of novels inspired by Nerja.

Meanwhile British star Edward Fox has asked to have a role in the movie based on international fraudster Oscar Phelps, who uses Nerja as a frequent base.

Author David B Green, who now lives in Canada, spent three years as a resident of the town in the 1990s and still has a soft spot for the area.

“The atmosphere in Nerja is different to the rest of the Costa del Sol, it hasn’t been touched by development in the same way and has retained much of its character from the 60s and 70s,” Green told the Olive Press.

The film, described as ‘a classic crime mystery thriller with all the ingredients of the genre’, spans 14 years in the life of Phelps, a loveable rogue and cold-blooded killer.

Now Green expects the film, that is being made by Astral Media, will use Nerja as one of its main bases.

“Lots of action would take place around town and all of the old town would be used, including The Church of El Salvador,” explained the father-of-seven, who works in healthcare.

“The name for my first book 32-Red is inspired by the fabulous 34 Carabeo restaurant, which I always thought would be a great place for Phelps to be based,” he added.

The film, which could also feature scenes in Marbella, Malaga and Motril, is still in the early stages of development, with the cast selection process due to get under way next month.

“The company are already touting it as similar to The Talented Mr Ripley, which was a huge hit a few years ago,” said Green.

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