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‘Blade Runner’ sequel adds Oscar nominee to cast

blade runner sequel barkhad abdi casting lfcca 2014
Christopher William Adach
Blade Runner director Ridley Scott has been sitting on a lot of information about the movie’s long-awaited sequel that fans of the sci-fi classic are itching to know, but we aren’t being kept completely in the dark. Casting updates have been coming over the past several months, and the most recent addition to the cast is Oscar nominee Barkhad Abdi, Deadline reports.

Although the Somali-American actor hasn’t been active in the film industry long, his career has already had impressive highlights. He made his debut in the 2013 survival thriller Captain Phillips, starring opposite Tom Hanks. After earning critical attention for the role, he nabbed a part in 2015’s Eye in the Sky, joining Helen Mirren, Alan Rickman, and Aaron Paul. More recently, he appeared in Sacha Baron Cohen’s The Brothers Grimsby, which opened stateside in March

The Blade Runner sequel makes another high-profile project for Abdi. As one of the stars of the film, he’ll work with Harrison Ford (the protagonist of the original) and Ryan Gosling, both of whom have also been nominated for Academy Awards in the past. Additional cast members include Dave Bautista, Robin Wright, Ana de Armas, Sylvia Hoeks, and Carla Juri.

The film is expected to pick up decades after the events of the first, in which ex-police officer Rick Deckard (played by Ford) is forced to hunt Replicants, only to fall in love with one. Abdi’s role in the film is still being kept under wraps, so it is unclear how his character will tie into the plot. The screenplay was written by Hampton Francher, who co-wrote the original, joined by Michael Green this time.

The Blade Runner sequel is set to begin production in July, with Denis Villeneuve at the helm. The film is scheduled to hit theaters on October 6, 2017.

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