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Mirren to join `Treasure' sequel

March 30, 2007|Sheigh Crabtree | Special to The Times

Oscar-winning actress Helen Mirren, the sexiest grande dame at this year's Academy Awards ceremony, is officially in on the secret.

Mirren is joining leading man Nicolas Cage in "National Treasure: Book of Secrets," the sequel to Walt Disney Pictures' action-adventure directed by Jon Turteltaub and produced by Jerry Bruckheimer. This mystery involves the assassination of President Lincoln, his assailant John Wilkes Booth -- and 18 pages missing from Booth's diary.

Mirren is set to play the mother of modern-day treasure hunter Ben Gates (Cage). Also joining the cast is Ed Harris, who will play the villain. Returning cast members include Diane Kruger, Justin Bartha and Jon Voight.

Disney plans to release the sequel Dec. 21. The original "National Treasure" earned $347 million in global box office when it opened in November 2004.

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