Sir Anthony Hopkins is set to play a villainous sorcerer in Chuck Russell's 'Arabian Nights'.

The screen legend is apparently in the final stages of negotiations to portray sorcerer Pharotu in the upcoming period epic, which follows a young commander who teams up with Sinbad, Ali Baba and a Genie when his king is murdered.

Liam Hemsworth is due to play the young leader as the group battle to rescue his Queen, Scheherazade.

However, the movie will see Anthony's evil alter-ego kill Sinbad's mermaid lover and search for more magic and power of his own, according to Hollywood Reporter.

Shooting on the movie is expected to start at the end of the summer.

Production will be overseen by Bill Johnson from Inferno and Mark Ciardi and Gordon Gray from Mayhem Pictures.

The storyline has been penned by director Chuck and Barry P. Ambrose.

It will be the second action thriller for 72-year-old Anthony, who next year will be seen in Kenneth Branagh's 'Thor' - which is based on the Marvel comic book series.