Star Wars: Donald Glover to star as young Lando in Han Solo movie
Donald Glover is going to a galaxy far, far away.
After months of speculation and rumors, Lucasfilm announced on Friday that Glover has officially signed on to play Lando Calrissian in the upcoming young Han Solo movie. The Star Wars spinoff stars Alden Ehrenreich as Han, and will focus on his early years as a smuggler and pilot.
According to Lucasfilm, the untitled Han Solo film will introduce Lando “in his formative years as a scoundrel on the rise in the galaxy’s underworld.” Phil Lord and Christopher Miller (The LEGO Movie) are set as directors on the project.
“We’re so lucky to have an artist as talented as Donald join us,” Lord and Miller said in a statement. “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 apologize to Donald for ruining Comic-Con for him forever.”
Lando first appeared in Star Wars: Episode V – The Empire Strikes Back, where he was played by Billy Dee Williams. The character shared a somewhat contentious history with Han, and was the prior owner of the Millennium Falcon. In Star Wars: Episode VI – Return of the Jedi, Lando helped rescue Han from Jabba the Hutt, and later flew the Millennium Falcon as a general in the Rebel Alliance.
Glover’s connection to the Han Solo spinoff movie was first reported back in August, when Birth.Movies.Death revealed he was the apparent top choice for the role. That same month, Glover told TIME he was aware of the rumors but wouldn’t confirm or deny any involvement.
“I mean, I grew up on [Star Wars]. My dad was a big fan. I had all the toys when I was little. I had a Darth Vader with the lightsaber he has. It was cool. It’s a dynasty. It’s like the bible. I love that franchise,” he said.
In addition to creating and starring in his FX series Atlanta, Glover is also known for his stand-up comedy, his long-running role as Troy on Community, and his music, which he’s released under the name Childish Gambino. He’s also been cast in next year’s Spider-Man: Homecoming.
The Han Solo movie will hit theaters in 2018.