There’s new Star Wars gossip to obsess about: There’s a report that director Rian Johnson is looking for a new female lead for “Star Wars: Episode VIII” and among those in the running is “Jane the Virgin” actress Gina Rodriguez.
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Two other stars who are also reportedly being auditioned are Orphan Black's Tatiana Maslany and Bates Motel's Olivia Cooke.
Reports The Wrap: “Insiders insist it’s early in the casting process and that Johnson is still auditioning actresses, with several rising stars yet to read for him. Others suggest that Johnson is narrowing down the field and that Rodriguez, Maslany and Cooke will be among a group of girls slated to chemistry-read with “The Force Awakens” star John Boyega before the end of the month.”
This isn't the first time Maslany has been under consideration for a role in a "Star Wars" film — she was reportedly in talks for Gareth Edwards' spinoff film over the winter, before "Theory of Everything" actress Felicity Jones ended up with the role. The Rian Johnson movie is part of the main series of films, which are being rebooted by J.J. Abrams with "Star Wars: Episode VII: The Force Awakens." Johnson will take over for the next film in the franchise.
Entertainment Tonight has also reported that Oscar-winner Benicio Del Toro has all but finalized talks to play a villain in “Star Wars: Episode VIII.”
“It looks like it’s gonna happen, so I’m very excited,” he said.
“Star Wars: Episode VIII” is scheduled for release in May 2017.
“Star Wars: The Force Awakens” opens later this year on Dec. 18.