10/22/2013 09:25 am ET

Jason Statham Joins Melissa McCarthy In 'Susan Cooper'


Jason Statham is taking a slight break from his butt-kicking résumé to try out his comedic chops.

The actor, best known for action-heavy roles in movies like "The Expendables" and "The Italian Job," is in talks to star opposite Melissa McCarthy in "Susan Cooper," Deadline.com reports. The movie finds McCarthy reteaming with director Paul Feig, with whom she worked on "Bridesmaids" and "The Heat."

The comedy won't require Statham to venture too far outside his wheelhouse, though. Meant to provide a female take on the male-dominated Bond genre, "Cooper" will have him playing a spy on the same team as McCarthy.

"Cooper" clearly has the chance to capitalize on the success of this past summer's "The Heat," a buddy comedy that proved lucrative for McCarthy, Feig and co-star Sandra Bullock. That movie, still playing in about 100 theaters, has grossed almost $160 million.

Statham's first two movies, 1999's "Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels" and 2000's "Snatch," were ostensible comedies, and the 46-year-old has expressed desire to try some new things with his career.

"You know, we're looking for that," Statham told HuffPost Entertainment last year when asked about trying out new genres. "I mean, we're not looking for that specifically to give my bones a rest. But I was talking about this the other day: It's so risky unless you've got a great filmmaker that's going to turn in a quality film."

Regardless of what happens with "Susan Cooper," Statham will continue his action dominion with November's "Homefront," also starring James Franco and Winona Ryder. Next year will find him reprising his villainous turn in the "Fast & Furious" series as well as knife expert Lee Christmas in the "Expendables" franchise.

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