Hollywood stars Dame Julie Walters and David Harewood have backed the Birmingham bid ©Birmingham 2022/Twitter

Hollywood stars Dame Julie Walters and David Harewood have joined more than 60 top sportsmen and women in backing their home city Birmingham's bid for the 2022 Commonwealth Games.

Dame Julie, who was born locally in Edgbaston and raised in Smethwick, is a two-time Academy Award nominee and a star of films including Billy Elliott, Mamma Mia! and Harry Potter.

The 67-year-old also worked as a state registered nurse at the city's Queen Elizabeth Hospital for 18 months before her acting breakthrough.

"Birmingham is a brilliant city, full of energy and lively people," she said.

"It's well known across the world both for sport and culture and it would be my city of choice to host the Commonwealth Games in 2022."

Harewood is a television star in Homeland and The Night Manager who also featured in Hollywood movies including multi-Academy Award winning Blood Diamond.

He was born in Small Heath in Birmingham.

"I support Birmingham's bid for the 2022 Commonwealth Games," he said.

"What a diverse, beautiful, fantastic city, this will be the hub of energy here in the Midlands. 

"We are the youngest city in Europe and it would be fantastic for the world to come to Birmingham and see what a great and vibrant place it is."

Birmingham is facing opposition from English rival Liverpool as well as Victoria in Canada and Kuala Lumpur in Malaysia to stand-in and host the Games.

This followed Durban being stripped of its hosting rights earlier this year after failing to meet a series of financial deadlines.

Sports stars to have backed the bid include four-time Olympic champion Sir Mo Farah as well as Olympic champion swimmer Adam Peaty and Jamaican sprint sensation Usain Bolt.

Others include five-time Paralympic swimming champion Ellie Simmonds and 11-time Paralympic wheelchair athletics champion turned House of Lords peer, Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson.

They are joined by others such as badminton player Fontaine Chapman, squash star Sarah-Jane Perry, Olympic hockey gold medallist Lily Owsley, gymnast Kristian Thomas, super-flyweight boxing champion Kal Yafai and four-time Ironman triathlon world champion Chrissie Wellington.

"The Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games and the Sandwell Aquatics Centre will inspire the next generation of swimmers as well as encourage the local community to enjoy swimming and diving and learn a valuable life skill," said Simmonds.

"I am so excited about the possibility of the Commonwealth Games coming to Birmingham and urge everyone to back the Birmingham bid."

Perry added: "It would be amazing to have the Commonwealth Games in my home city at the peak of my career. 

"Birmingham has so much to offer in term of venues, history and culture, I have no doubt it would be an overwhelming success."