Words are, the negotiations between Biel and 20th Century Fox 'have broken down' that the studio is forced to find a replacement soon before the film begins shooting next month.
Jessica Biel won't be starring as Viper in "The Wolverine" after all. In less than a week after her casting news buzzed, Collider now reports that the "Total Recall" actress has turned down the opportunity to play the villainess in the upcoming Hugh Jackman-starring Marvel movie.
Multiple insiders told the site that "talks have broken down between Biel and 20th Century Fox." That led the studio to approach other actresses to fill the part of Viper soon since the filming is skedded to kick off this August in Australia.
Viper is a complex character. The villainess is known as Victoria by day and turns into Viper by night. A lover of the Silver Samurai, Viper is strongly associated with the Hand, an order of evil mystical ninja who are heavily involved in organized crime and mercenary activities.
Slated for a July 26, 2013 release in the United States, "The Wolverine" will take its cue from the early 1980s Chris Claremont/Frank Miller miniseries, which is set in Japan. It follows the mutant hero as he deals with ninjas and struggles whether to follow his animal killer instincts or live under a samurai's code of honor and respect.
Serving as the helmer is James Mangold with Mark Bomback and Christopher McQuarrie providing the script. Joining Jackman in the cast ensemble are Will Yun Lee as villainous Silver Samurai, and Brian Tee as corrupt minister of justice Noburo Mori.