George Clooney
George Clooney is to direct the film about the News of the World phone hacking scandal.Reuters

George Clooney has revealed plans to direct a film adaptation of the book Hack Attack.

The film, based on journalist Nick Davies' book The Inside Story of How the Truth Caught Up With Rupert Murdoch, centres on the British phone-hacking scandal surrounding Rupert Murdoch's news empire.

Davies spent six years investigating Murdoch's News Corp. and its subsidiary, News International exposing the company's practice of hacking into the voicemail messages of celebrities and ordinary British citizens. They were growing allegations that its journalists had illegally accessed the voicemails of thousands of people, from child murder victims to the families of Britain's war dead.

It was claimed that News of the World investigators had even tried to hack the voicemails of dead 9/11 victims.

The 2011 phone hacking scandal led to the closure of Britian's top-selling Sunday tabloid News of the World, after 168 years of publication.

It prompted a government inquiry that made public the shocking business practices at the News corporation.

The publication's former executive editor Neil Wallis and former editor Rebekah Brooks were both arrested, along with more than 10 others, in relation to the hacking accusations.

In a statement, Clooney said: "This has all the elements — lying, corruption, blackmail - at the highest levels of government by the biggest newspaper in London.

"And the fact that it's true is the best part. Nick is a brave and stubborn reporter and we consider it an honour to put his book to film."

Michael De Luca, president of production for Columbia Pictures, will oversee the project for Sony.

"As the son of a journalist, George has a sharp interest in the role journalism plays in all of our lives — whether that's for good, as in Good Night, and Good Luck, or for bad," said De Luca in a statement.

"With Hack Attack, George will explore the dark side of that world, a business where all of the rules of journalism are broken in the race for an easy and ever-larger payday."

Clooney and Grant Heslov will produce through their Smokehouse banner for Sony. Shooting is scheduled to start next year.

The Hollywood actor turned director for 2014's The Monuments Men, the political drama The Ides of March and the Edward R. Murrowdrama Good Night, and Good Luck.