James Bond is turning bad. Sean Connery is heading back to the screen in a spy flick and this time he's playing the heavy. The former 007 is in negotiations to play the megalomaniac in the big-screen version of The Avengers, according to Daily Variety.

Connery, who last played a villain in 1957's Action of the Tiger (that's not counting a 1961 turn as Macbeth in Canada), will star opposite crime-fighters Uma Thurman and Ralph Fiennes.

The latter star as Emma Peel and Jonathan Steed, a pair of secret agents who originally thwarted larger-than-life scoundrels on TV, before making the jump to the silver screen courtesy of Warner Bros. and director Jeremiah Chechik.

The Avengers started out as a '60s era British series, first coming to U.S. audiences in 1966 on ABC, starring Patrick Macnee as the ever-debonair Steed and Diana Rigg as Steed's leather jump-suited cohort, Peel. Every week the duo stumbled upon new international espionage rings or foiled world-dominations plots, often out-Bond-ing Bond in their capers.

The film version is scheduled to begin shooting in June and should appear in theaters in 1998.

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