Saturday, July 25, 2015

Benicio Del Toro is Disney's pick to play lead villain in 'Star Wars: Episode VIII'

Although we haven't even received our first taste of Disney's new Star Wars universe, Episode VIII is coming up sooner than you think. Rian Johnson's sequel is heading into production pretty soon, and despite how little we know about JJ Abrams's Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Disney and Lucasfilm will have to cast some new characters for the eighth chapter in the saga. John Boyega, Daisy Ridley and Oscar Isaac- the new "Big 3" of the Star Wars universe- are confirmed to be returning for Episode VIII, and now, The Wrap and several other Hollywood trades are reporting that Oscar winner Benicio Del Toro has received an offer to play the main villain in Episode VIII. Joaquin Phoenix was also up for the role, and the trades say that Disney was definitely going after "A-list talent" for this villainous character. Del Toro hasn't been confirmed yet, but considering his previous history with Disney (he appeared in Marvel's Guardians of the Galaxy), I would be surprised to not see him take the role.

We likely won't know much more than we already do in regards to Star Wars: The Force Awakens, but we should be able to pick up some clues thanks to production information from Episode VIII (although I doubt that it'll be much). JJ Abrams seems keen to keep a tight lid on things, but some interesting discussion has already started in the Star Wars community over who Del Toro might be playing and the implications of his casting for Episode VII. For those who haven't fervently obsessed over every Star Wars detail, there are four villains in this new film- Captain Phasma (Gwendolyn Christie), General Hux (Domnhall Gleeson), Kylo Ren (Adam Driver) and Supreme Leader Snoke (Andy Serkis). The assumption is that Snoke will be an Emperor-esque figure for the rest of the trilogy but with Del Toro's casting, things get a bit more interesting. My bet is that one of those four villains (probably Hux or Phasma) bites the dust in The Force Awakens, leaving a big trifecta for the rest of the series. Hopefully we'll get some more details at D23 (Disney's annual Anaheim convention) next month. Star Wars: The Force Awakens hits on December 18, with Episode VIII debuting on May 26, 2017.

Image Credits: Flickering Myth

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