Eoin Butler: writer, journalist and Mayoman of the Year

Tripping Along The Ledge

the devil’s double


This is a piece I wrote about The Devil’s Double for The Guardian last weekend. I’m flattered someone took the time to set up, not one, but two comment accounts to defend Latif Yahia and his Walter Mitty-esque memoirs. But most of all, I’m glad that this is the last time I’ll be mentioning his name, here or anywhere else.

I Wasn’t The Devil’s Double. I Made the Whole Thing Up. [UPDATED]

There’s an interesting story by Ed Caesar in tomorrow’s Sunday Times. It concerns a man named Latif Yahia, who is the subject of a new $20m film called The Devil’s Double, starring Dominic Cooper (Mamma Mia!, The History Boys.) Yahia first came to my attention four years ago, when I was on the staff of an independent magazine called Mongrel.

I had come across the story of an Iraqi exile living in Ireland. The guy seemed to have been through hell. He had been taken out of the Iraqi army, in which he served as a captain during the Iran-Iraq war, and forced to work as a body-double for Uday Hussein. He had been tortured and even forced to undergo cosmetic surgery that he might more closely resemble Saddam’s psychotic son. Read the rest of this entry »


Remember Latif Yahia? Iraqi army captain, worked as Uday Hussein’s body double, escaped into exile, took a policeman hostage, punched a judge, torched a refugee camp, married an Irish woman, got into a beef with Michael McDowell and posted some fucking scary messages on this blog… Yeah, that Latif Yahia.

A $20m biopic based on his book I Was Saddam’s Son is about to go into production, starring Dominic Cooper (Mama Mia, An Education.) And the film’s director has a pretty colourful back story all of his own… Read the rest of this entry »