Anthony Hopkins has been confirmed to take the lead role in a new adaptation of the Shakespeare tragedy KING LEAR.

The Oscar-winning actor is reportedly "thrilled" to have the opportunity to reprise the role, having already played the character in David Hare's production at the National Theatre 21 years ago.

Gwyneth Paltrow, Naomi Watts and Keira Knightley will star as Lear's three daughters, director Joshua Michael Stern has said.

"The one thing that I'm staying away from is stunt casting," said Stern, "so there won't be the American comedian, but there will be some really great actors playing smaller roles that will make a lot of sense."

He added that intends to be faithful to the original text, saying that he is "not very fond of The Modern adaptations".

The movie will begin shooting in Britain or Ireland in the early part of next year.

Hopkins recently visited the YMCA in Port Talbot, where he made his first forays into acting.

26/06/2008 11:06:34