Guardians of the Galaxy casts Benicio Del Toro in lead role

By James Dohnert , Updated Jun 04, 2013 03:42 PM EDT
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For a movie with a talking raccoon, Guardians of the Galaxy is getting together quite the cast. The Marvel movie has already cast Oscar nominee Glenn Close for a role. John C. Reilly is also set to lead the film in an Agent Coulson type role.

The film's stellar cast has now added another accomplished actor to its stable. Marvel has cast Benicio Del Toro for a lead role in the film. The star of Che is set to play an as yet unnamed role in the space adventure.

Deadline reports that Del Toro has signed on to play a character that will have a multiple film arc for the Marvel brand. The site says that Del Toro has signed a multiple film contract that will see his character in Guardians of the Galaxy appear in more than one film in the universe.

Speculation pegs Del Toro playing Thanos. The big bad from the first Avengers film is being herald as the main villain for phase two of the Marvel films. Thanos was introduced as the bad guy pulling Loki's strings in Avengers. The giant purple nemesis was shown in a brief post-credits stinger in last year's successful film.

In the comics, Thanos is a cosmic villain that wants to destroy the universe to meet the physical manifestation of Death. He is the boss of many of Marvel's biggest villains. If Del Toro ends up playing the part he will most likely play a bit part in Guardians of the Galaxy before taking on the reins of as the main villain for Avengers 2.

While Del Toro is a solid choice for the role, he is a far cry from those rumored to take on the part. Last year, comic book writer Jim Starlin pitched the idea of getting Arnold Schwarzenegger for the part of Thanos. Speaking at DragonCon, Starlin said that the former Terminator has the voice and pathos to take on the role.

Guardians of the Galaxy is already full of villainous characters. As already reported Karen Gillian, Lee Pace and Michael Rooker are set to play bad guy roles in James Gunn's film. The trio adds to a unique cast that includes Zoe Saldana, Chris Pratt and David Bautista. The group will play a set of space mercenaries who go on the run after stealing a powerful extraterrestrial weapon. 

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