London -- Pinewood Studios executives are hush on the situation, but sources close to the upcoming James Bond movie say that William Shatner has agreed to portray the villain.
The next MGM film, slated for release in late 2005, titled 'Dead to Rights', stars Pierce Brosnan in what may be his last go as 007.
Early scripts leaked to the internet describe the William Shatner character, only known as 'Spectron', as a rich, powerful billionaire hell bent on causing the earth to crash into the sun.
This isn't the former 'Star Trek' captains first venture into the web of MI6. He was rumored to have declined the role of Elliot Carver in 1997's 'Tomorrow Never Dies', a role filled by Jonathan Pryce.
William Shatner currently stars on the ABC television series 'The Practice'. The 73 year old actor has had a long and storied career, from starship captain to music legend.
"I like the idea of destroying the planet by crashing it into the sun" said Shatner on Friday, "It is just so, so primal, so evil, so...so perfect for me. Besides, it's better than doing another crappy Columbo movie."