DICE has confirmed that those who've bought a retail copy of Battlefield 3 will be required to download Origin.
It's not mentioned if this applies as well to the download of the game from other services - except Steam, of course - but it's probably a forgone assumption that it will.
When asked if Origin was required for the retail version, DICE community manager Daniel Matros said on Twitter: "Yes those "rumors" are true."
And there you go. Battlefield 3 releases on October 25 in the US and October 28 in the UK for PS3, 360 and PC.