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Cumberbatch to play villain in ‘Star Trek 2’

'Tinker Tailor' thesp cast in J.J. Abrams-helmed sci-fier

On the heels of his well-received turns in “War Horse” and “Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy,” Brit thesp Benedict Cumberbatch has been tapped to play the villain in J.J. Abrams’ “Star Trek 2.”

Cumberbatch landed the role that Edgar Ramirez had auditioned for last month.

Cumberbatch joins fellow Brit newcomers Noel Clarke and Alice Eve, as well as Peter Weller.

Paramount had no comment on the casting.

Abrams is directing from a script by Alex Kurtzman, Roberto Orci and Damon Lindelof. That quartet will also produce the “Star Trek” sequel with Bryan Burk and David Ellison through Bad Robot and Skydance Prods. Pic is skedded for release on May 17, 2013.

Cumberbatch has won a legion of fans for his portrayal of Sherlock Holmes on the BBC series “Sherlock.”

He is repped by UTA.

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