Do we have a new female action star on our hands? It appears so.

Much like how he mainstreamed porn star Sasha Grey in his independent flick The Girlfriend Experience, prolific director Steven Soderbergh (Traffic, the Ocean's 11 movies, Che) took a risk in casting MMA standout Gina Carano for his latest flick; after seeing clips of in-ring bouts, he made it his mission to turn the pint-sized fighter into an action hero. The result: Haywire, which finds the mixed martial arts fighter starring as a spy who gets double-crossed by her cohorts and goes on a vengeful war-path. And the first trailer isn't half bad.

In the preview, Carano man-handles several dudes, including co-star Channing Tatum, with a barrage of kneeing, elbowing, and arm-bars to bore you; int he way of actual acting, though, there's very little on display. Aesthetically, Haywire feels like every other spy-fights-back-against-traitors film, but the cast here is too badass to write off. Aside from Tatum, Soderbergh recruited the great Michael Fassbender (Magneto in X-Men: First Class, though it looks like he dies swiftly here) Ewan McGregor, Michael Douglas, Antonio Banderas, and Bill Paxton.

Will Carano's first-time acting chops make or break Soderbergh's latest? We'll find out when Haywire opens on January 20, 2012.