Rachel Nichols Updates on I, Alex Cross

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The female lead in the upcoming Conan the Barbarian, Rachel Nichols is preparing to move from the Hyborian Age to a more contemporary environment. Today, Nichols told ComingSoon.net that she’s been practicing her Chicago accent for her soon-to-film role in the James Patterson adaptation I, Alex Cross.

“I’m very excited,” she said, “I don’t think anyone has ever been as excited as I am about going to Detroit and Cleveland… I get a gun! I’m a detective and I’m happy to get a gun back. No more swords.”

Directed by Rob Cohen, I, Alex Cross features a script from Mark Moss. Though the title comes from a specific novel in the long-running series, Nichols reveals that the film will have an original story.

“It’s based on the Alex Cross series from James Patterson,” she says, “but it’s not based on the book, ‘I, Alex Cross.'”

Morgan Freeman previously played Cross in Paramount’s Kiss the Girls and Along Came a Spider, but Tyler Perry will be stepping into the role for the Summit Entertainment release.

“I worked with [Perry] a little bit during ‘Star Trek,'” she continues, “I really wanted him to take a dramatic role because he’s got this vibe about him. I think he’s going to be great.”

Nichols also joins Ed Burns, Matthew Fox and Jean Reno for the project, which will shoot first in Ohio and then Michigan.

“I’ve got another little sexy scene with Ed Burns,” she laughs, “which is not so bad.”

Conan the Barbarian hits theaters on August 19th of this year while I, Alex Cross is still unscheduled, likely to arrive sometime in 2012.

(Photo Credit: Apega / WENN.com)