Matthew Modine is set to make a big return to blockbuster films with a newly announced role in director Christopher Nolan's upcoming film, "The Dark Knight Rises."

The actor, known for his performances in such films as "Full Metal Jacket" and "Memphis Belle," will reportedly play a villain named "Nixon" — who is characterized as a corrupt Gotham City politician. In response to the rumor, Modine only said "Hmmm..." on his Twitter profile which can be interpreted any number of ways. As for the movie, he earlier tweeted: "It's going to be good. Real good."

Outside of Hollywood, the 52-year-old has been active in recent years with environmental initiatives — in particular anything to do with spurring more people to embrace his own life-long love of bicycling. 

"Obesity and heart disease are real dangers," Modine told MNN during the "It Ours To Save" benefit concert in 2010. "Bicycling is something you can do that has an immediate impact on your health. And using a bike instead of a gas-powered vehicle is also an immediate positive solution to our environmental problems. Riding a bike is the best thing for you and for the environment."

In 2008, Modine launched his Bicycle For a Day campaign, which encourages people to get out of their cars and into the streets using a bike, skateboard or anything else not dependent on gasoline. “The idea behind my project Bicycle for a Day is to help people understand that there is something they can do,” he recently wrote. “In fact, just one simple thing they can do every day to become part of the solution. If everybody does this one thing, the cumulative effect could be tremendous.”

Modine is expected to start shooting his scenes for "The Dark Knight Rises" in London later this month. 

Michael d'Estries ( @michaeldestries ) covers science, technology, art, and the beautiful, unusual corners of our incredible world.

Matthew Modine joins 'The Dark Knight Rises'
Rumors swirl that the actor and biking advocate will play a villainous politician in Christopher Nolan's third and final 'Batman' film.