Fresh off his star turn in Star Wars: The Force Awakens, John Boyega will take the lead role in another franchise picture. Legendary Pictures announced Monday that Boyega will star in the second Pacific Rim movie, which will begin filming later this year. Boyega will play the son of Stacker Pentecost, played by Idris Elba in the first film. (Given how that film ended, Elba is unlikely to appear – although worth pointing out that Boyega can always find him in the drift.)
“I am very proud and happy to welcome John into a fantastic sandbox,” said Pacific Rim co-creator Guillermo Del Toro, who will produce the new film after directing the first one. “The Pacific Rim universe will be reinforced with him as a leading man as it continues to be a multicultural, multi-layered world.”
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Boyega’s character is described by Legendary as “the lead role” in a press release, so it’s unclear at this point if the film will incorporate original stars Charlie Hunnam and Rinko Kikuchi. The original film had so-so blockbuster box office results in the United States but performed fantastically abroad, particularly in the crucial Chinese market. The sequel will be directed by Steven S. DeKnight, best known for his work on the Spartacus TV series.
In an Instagram post, Boyega announced that he would also be co-producing the film through his shingle Upper Room Productions. Maybe that means he’ll get to have input into his character’s name. Hacker Pentecost? Tracker Pentecost? Tackler Pentecost? The possibilities are infinite! Pacific Rim 2!