Spellcheck nemesis Live Scrubber – sorry, Liev Schreiber – is in talks to star in Salt, the Angelina Jolie spy thriller that will be directed by Phillip Noyce.

Jolie will take the title role of Evelyn Salt – once Edwin Salt, a role that had been earmarked for Tom Cruise – a CIA agent who is framed as a Russian spy. With the clock ticking down to a Presidential assassination, Salt must clear her name, find the real traitor (clue: it’ll be whoever’s fourth or fifth-billed; if Paul Giamatti is cast, I’m suspending betting), and reunite with her family.

Schreiber, soon to be giving it his best snarl as Sabretooth in X-Men Origins: Wolverine, will play Salt’s boss on the Russian desk at the CIA. Of course, he might turn out to be the traitor, but it’s more likely that he’ll be a badass, helping Salt in her quest to clear her name. Seeing Schreiber associated with the CIA brings back warm memories of his role as John Clark in The Sum Of All Fears, when he was – as he often is – one of the best things about that movie.

Schreiber is the first big name to join the movie, apart from La Jolie, of course. It’ll be interesting to see who else signs on before filming starts next month in New York. I repeat: if you see Giamatti’s name, the bad guy jig is up.