Film, TV & Stage

Donald Glover cast as young Lando Calrissian in upcoming Han Solo Star Wars film

SMOOTH-TALKING: Lando Calrissian, who was played by Billy Dee Williams in The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi, will now be played by Donald Glover (right)

SMOOTH-TALKING: Lando Calrissian, who was played by Billy Dee Williams in The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi, will now be played by Donald Glover (right)

LUCASFILM HAS announced that Donald Glover, an acclaimed actor, award-winning writer, and Grammy-nominated artist, will play the part of Lando Calrissian in the still-untitled Han Solo Star Wars spinoff.

Once a smooth-talking smuggler, Lando Calrissian, played by Billy Dee Williams in The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi, changed from a get-rich-quick schemer to a selfless leader in the fight against the Empire.

Donald will join Alden Ehrenreich — previously cast as Han Solo — in bringing two iconic Star Wars characters back to the big screen, but at a time in their lives previously unexplored.

The upcoming film will explore a previously unseen side of Lando, with Lucasfilm saying it will show “his formative years as a scoundrel on the rise in the galaxy’s underworld.” Sources say the film will show how Lando lost the Millennium Falcon to Han.

“We’re so lucky to have an artist as talented as Donald join us,” said directors Phil Lord and Christopher Miller. “These are big shoes to fill, and an even bigger cape, and this one fits him perfectly, which will save us money on alterations. Also, we’d like to publicly apologise to Donald for ruining Comic-Con for him forever.”

The 33-year old is best known for creating and starring in the critically acclaimed FX series Atlanta (which had the highest premiere numbers for any basic cable comedy show since 2013), as well as for starring in four seasons of the show Community, and for his Grammy-nominated album Because the Internet, performed under the name Childish Gambino.

In addition, Donald appeared in the Academy Award-nominated The Martian, and will be seen in the upcoming Spider-Man: Homecoming.

The untitled Han Solo movie is set for release in 2018.

Star Wars: The Force Awakens, which starred British actor John Boyega, opened in December and broke records at the box office. To date, it has earned over $2 billion worldwide, according to Box Office Mojo.

The follow-up, Star Wars VIII will be released next year.

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