It looks like the rumors that Tom Hardy will play the villain, Professor Hugo Strange, in The Dark Knight Rises are reportedly untrue.
A source working on the film has revealed to Batman-on-Film that Hardy won't be playing the original Batman villain. The rumor of Hardy's casting orginated after it was reported that Nolan was taking inspiration for the film from the comic book storyline 'Prey', in which psychiatrist Professor Strange becomes obsessed with discovering Batman's secret identity.
To give you an idea of how quickly rumors can star look at the rumor of how The Riddler was going to be the main villain in the film. This rumor was thought to be true up until earlier this year when Nolan dismissed the idea.
This current rumor could still turn out to be false. Hardy is still a part of the film and an official announcement is expected in early 2011 on what role he will actually play. The Dark Knight Rises will be released on July 20, 2012.