Sheffield actor famous as boozy womanising US cop lands role of Fred West

THE Sheffield-born star of The Wire, Dominic West, has been cast to play serial killer Fred West in a new ITV drama.

The 41-year-old actor, who rose to fame as hard-drinking cop Jimmy McNulty in the gritty US drama series The Wire, will appear in the two-part series to be recorded later this year.

The programme, to be called Appropriate Adult, will centre on the period between Gloucestershire builder Fred West's arrest and his suicide in his prison cell on New Year's Day in 1995. Fred and his wife Rosemary West tortured, raped and murdered at least 12 young women and girls between 1967 and 1987.

Dominic West, who is to start filming in Manchester later this year, was born in Sheffield and grew up in Grindleford in the Hope Valley. He attended the exclusive Eton public school and studied at Trinity College in Dublin.

Last year he received an honorary degree from Sheffield Hallam University.

Receiving his degree at the City Hall he joked that there little difference between "the mean streets" of Baltimore, where The Wire was set, and Sheffield.

He told the audience of students and their families that the Wire writer David Simon had taken him around the desolate housing projects of Baltimore and shown him the failing football team and derelict steelworks.

He said: "David turned to me and said: 'It's depressing, isn't it?' I thought: 'Not at all ... it's just like home.'"

West said his grandfather and great-uncle had been doctors in Sheffield and his sister continues to practise here.

He added: "It is with great pride, and a certain feeling of being an impostor, that I thank this wonderful university for this great honour of making me also a Sheffield doctor."

ITV said it consulted with Gloucestershire Constabulary over Appropriate Adult.

Executive producer Jeff Pope said: "Our intention is to produce a sober and thought-provoking drama based on a true story.

"We have developed the script over the past three years and it provides a unique insight into the police investigation which led to the conviction of Fred and Rose West."

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