Cillian Murphy and Jamie Dornan are to star in director Jim Sheridan's upcoming film about the 1983 Maze Prison breakout with Pierce Brosnan also in talks to join the true story thriller.

US entertainment trade publication Deadline, which first reported the story, says that Peaky Blinders star Murphy and Fifty Shades' Dornan will play Republican escapees in H-Block, while Brosnan is in talks to play the warden. Distribution sales of the film are due to take place at next month's Cannes Film Festival.

Thirty-eight IRA prisoners escaped from HMP Maze near Belfast in September 1983. One prison officer died from a heart attack after being stabbed and another was seriously injured. 

Murphy and Dornan have previously worked together on another true story, the WWII thriller Anthropoid, which chronicled the plot to kill SS head Reinhard Heydrich, known as "The Butcher of Prague", and right-hand man to Heinrich Himmler and Adolf Hitler. The acclaimed film was released in cinemas last autumn.

Jamie Dornan and Cillian Murphy in 2016's Anthropoid

H-Block will mark the first time the actors have worked with six-time Oscar nominee Sheridan, whose other credits include My Left Foot, In the Name of the Father and The Boxer.

Daniel Day-Lewis and Emma Thompson in 1993's In the Name of the Father

Sheridan's latest film, The Secret Scripture - an adaptation of the Sebastian Barry book of the same name - was released in cinemas last month. 

Rooney Mara and Jack Reynor in The Secret Scripture

Deadline reports that he is working on a "shooting script" for H-Block with Nic Sheff, whose credits include the controversial teen series 13 Reasons Why. The original script for H-Block was written by Tony Devlin and Gavin McCloskey. 

Another film about the Maze escape, starring Love/Hate's Tom Vaughan-Lawlor and Rebellion's Barry Ward, was filmed in the decommissioned Cork Prison last year

Titled Maze, it is written and directed by award-winning shorts director Stephen Burke and is due for release in January 2018. 

Murphy will next be seen on cinema screens in another WWII film, Dunkirk, which also stars Love/Hate's Barry Keoghan and singer Harry Styles. Directed by Christopher Nolan (Inception, The Dark Knight), Dunkirk opens on July 21. 

Cillian Murphy in Dunkirk

Dornan is currently working on the adventure movie Robin Hood. He plays Will Scarlet opposite Taron Egerton's titular hero.