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Dickens' adap has Great Expectations for Ralph Fiennes

Ralph Fiennes is in talks to play convict Abel Magwitch in Mike Newell's adaptation of Charles Dicken's Great Expectations .

According to a report by the Daily Mail, Fiennes is currently in very early discussions about joining the new adaptation, which will celebrate Dickens' bicentenary.

Fiennes would be an extremely solid choice for Magwitch, with his combination of steely menace and sinister charm, and his uncanny ability to blend in across every strata of society.

He also has the thesping stature for what's guaranteed to be a lavish, prestige pic.

If he signs, he could be reteaming with Harry Potter cohort Helena Bonham Carter, who's looking to take the role of batty spinster Miss Havisham.

Jeremy Irvine, who'll be seen starring in Steven Spielberg's War Horse later this year, has already bagged the lead role of Pip, but there's been no clear indication of who could potentially play Estella.

Newell is putting together a heck of a cast, though he'll have to go some way to top David Lean's 1946 adaptation of the novel.