Anthony Hopkins Circles <i>RED 2</i>

Oscar winner Anthony Hopkins is in negotiations to play the villain in RED 2, the sequel to Summit Entertainment's 2010 sleeper hit loosely based on the DC Comics miniseries by Warren Ellis and Cully Hamner. However, Deadline contends there could be a scheduling conflict between the action-comedy and Thor 2, in which he'll reprise his role as Odin.

If the calendar works out, Hopkins will play Edward Bailey, whom Heat Vision describes as a genius scientist who was committed to an insane asylum. He would join returning stars Bruce Willis, John Malkovich, Mary-Louise Parker and Helen Mirren, as well as new additions Catherine Zeta-Jones and Byung-Hun Lee.

The first film centered on former CIA agents -- RED is an acronym for “retired, extremely dangerous” -- targeted for assassination because of the secrets they know. The $60 million movie exceeded box-office expectations, grossing nearly $200 million worldwide. The follow-up, directed by Dean Parisot (Galaxy Quest) from a script by RED screenwriters by Erich and Jon Hoeber, reunites the retired CIA operatives “as they use their old-school style to take on a new set of enemies all across Europe.”

RED 2 is scheduled for release on Aug. 2, 2013.

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