Benicio Del Toro has been offered the main villain role in Star Wars: Episode VIII by Disney and LucasFilm. The Wrap reports that discussions are in very early stages, but the actor is Disney's top choice for the role. Neither Disney nor LucasFilm had any comment about the potential casting, and no details were given for the character.
If Benicio Del Toro does sign on, he will be the first confirmed cast member for Star Wars 8, which will be written and directed by Rian Johnson. It is believed that Star Wars: The Force Awakens stars John Boyega (Finn), Daisy Ridley (Rey) and Oscar Isaac (Poe Dameron) will reprise their roles in Star Wars: Episode VIII and Star Wars: Episode IX, but that has yet to be confirmed. Production is expected to begin early next year, with the studios already setting a May 26, 2017 release date.
Kathleen Kennedy is producing alongside Ram Bergman, who has produced all three of Rian Johnson's previous films, Brick, The Brothers Bloom and Looper. It isn't known how much of a time gap there will be between Star Wars: The Force Awakens and Star Wars: Episode VIII, or if there will be any gap at all. LucasFilm will kick off the first of its spinoff movies, Star Wars Anthology: Rogue One, in 2016, which has Felicity Jones, Diego Luna, Ben Mendelsohn and Forest Whitaker attached to star.
Benicio Del Toro starred in last year's Marvel and Disney blockbuster Guardians of the Galaxy and in the Paul Thomas Anderson adaptation Inherent Vice. He will next be seen in The Little Prince, Sicario and Escobar: Paradise Lost later this year. He also has An Ex to Grind in development. The beloved actor won an Oscar for Best Supporting Actor in Traffic.
The actor has a long history of playing menacing characters and villains, which makes him an easy choice for the Star Wars: Episode VIII enemy, whoever that may be. There is still plenty we don't know about Star Wars: The Force Awakens, which hits theaters this December. Do you think Benicio Del Toro is the right choice for the villain in Star Wars: Episode VIII?