Colin Firth, Toby Jones, And More Join Sam Mendes' Empire Of Light

Sam Mendes is assembling the cast of his next film, and even though it hasn't actually been made yet, it already sounds like an awards contender in-the-making. The "1917" director's latest project is titled "Empire of Light," and we previously learned that Olivia Colman and Michael Ward would star. Now "Empire of Light" has added several additional actors, including Colin Firth, Crystal Clarke, Tanya Moodie, and Toby Jones, per Deadline.

We can't report much about the plot of "Empire of Light" yet as it's currently being kept under wraps, but we know it's a romance set in 1980s England. The movie apparently revolves around a "beautiful old cinema" on the South Coast. Lauded cinematographer and long-time Mendes collaborator Roger Deakins will return as director of photography, so no matter what the movie's about, we know it's all but guaranteed to look stunning.

The Cast Is Coming Together

Firth appeared in Mendes' most recent film, the best picture nominee "1917." This will be Colman's first time working with the director. The actress, a frequent staple in award season conversations, is most recently gaining praise for her performance in Maggie Gyllenhaal's directorial debut, "The Lost Daughter." Firth and Colman also worked together recently on a film called "Mothering Sunday," in which they play a married couple.

Newest cast addition Clarke can currently be seen in PBS' Jane Austen-based series "Sandition," while Tanya Moodie was a regular cast member in the series "A Discovery of Witches." Both actresses have also made appearances in the most recent "Star Wars" trilogy. Character actor Toby Jones, who appeared alongside Firth in "Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy," rounds out the latest casting announcement.

Despite his impressive two decade filmmaking career, "Empire of Light" will be the first script Sam Mendes has written alone, and the second he's worked on after "1917." The director's films are always visually striking and often have a strong emotional through-line, but as his first foray into solo script-writing, it's tough to compare this story to others he's brought to life before. We'll eagerly await more updates for the Searchlight Pictures project.