Star Wars: Episode VIII won’t hit theaters until May 26, 2017. The production will be momentous, but intensive casting trials are still underway. Rian Johnson will direct for Disney and Lucasfilm, and shooting should start in early 2016. Competition remains fierce for all roles, and The Wrap dropped some tidbits about the female lead shortlist. This information is still in the rumor stage, as Disney has refused to comment. Auditions are still very much underway, but according to The Wrap, the three highest contenders for the (ambiguous) role are Tatiana Maslany, Gina Rodriguez and Olivia Cooke.
Maslany is, of course, the actress known best for her acclaimed performance in the beloved Orphan Black television series. She has a Golden Globe nomination under her belt, but Rodriguez, who currently stars in Jane the Virgin, can claim a Globe win. Maslany does have another advantage, as she nearly secured the lead in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (before the role went to Felicity Jones). Olivia Cooke of Bates Motel could be the wild card. The ladies are said to be on schedule for further testing later this month.
As far as a prominent male lead is concerned, Benicio del Toro confirmed he was in the running for a villain role. No official news has come down the pike on that end, but why not? He’s an Oscar winner, and this pedigree virtually demands he enter the franchise. Del Toro may experience some scheduling difficulties, however, due to his upcoming Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 role as The Collector. Given the choice, will he go with Marvel or Lucasfilm? Either way, Del Toro will find himself under Disney’s thumb. What a wrinkle.
(Via The Wrap)