There was no one else who could tackle the role. No. Not Eddie Murphy. Not Tracy Morgan. Only Morgan Freeman could fill the shoes of former South African President Nelson Mandela. According to Variety, the classically trained thespian will be starring as the once great leader in an adaptation of John Carlin's book The Human Factor: Nelson Mandela and the Game That Changed the World.

The film will take place after the fall of apartheid, around the time that South Africa hosted the 1995 Rugby World Cup. Mandela was in his first term as president, and he used the event to try and erase decades of mistrust and hatred between the blacks and whites of the region.

Freeman is also producing the film through his own production company. Anthony Peckham, who hails from South Africa, adapted the novel into script form.

Freeman stated, "I have known Nelson Mandela personally for quite some time, and am continually in awe of his enormous presence in the world. The opportunity to portray him in this film is a great honor."

The film is slated to begin shooting early next year.