Sacha Baron Cohen to star in Saddam Hussein novel adaptation

'The Dictator' to be released next year

Sacha Baron Cohen is to star in a film based on a novel by former Iraqi dictator Saddam Hussein.

The novel is called Zabibah and The King and was published in 2000. It told the story of a wise monarch who falls in love with a commoner.

The book was written under the pseudonym ‘The Author’, and was one of four works written by Hussein.

Baron Cohen‘s adaptation will be called The Dictator, and will tell “the heroic story of a dictator who risked his life to ensure that democracy would never come to the country he so lovingly oppressed,” reports The Telegraph.

The comedian is best known for playing the roles of Ali G and Kazakh journalist Borat. He’s also scheduled to play Freddie Mercury in a forthcoming biopic.

Larry Charles, writer of Seinfeld, will direct ‘The Dictator’, slated for release in May 2012.