Billy Ray Cyrus and Kenny RogersBilly Ray Cyrus is set to star in 'Christmas in Canaan,' a made-for-TV movie based on a novel written by fellow country entertainer Kenny Rogers.

'Christmas,' which is set in 1960s Texas, tells the story of the friendship that develops between two young boys -- DJ (played by Zak Ludwig), who's white, and Rodney (Jaishon Fisher), who's black. The boys bond over their concern for a wounded puppy. Billy Ray plays DJ's dad in the film, which will air on the Hallmark Channel in December.

Though Kenny has acted in dozens of films and TV shows, this is his first stint as a writer for the small screen. Billy Ray has also garnered a laundry list of acting credits, including his starring roles in the TV shows 'Doc' and 'Hannah Montana.' After 'Christmas in Canaan,' next up for Billy Ray is the film 'The Spy Next Door,' with Jackie Chan and George Lopez, which is expected to be released early in 2010.