10 Actors We Want To See Join The Star Wars Universe

As the "Star Wars" galaxy continues to expand, so does the sheer volume of characters that inhabit it. It seems like everyone has appeared in a "Star Wars" project of some kind, or at least auditioned for one. The franchise has become a pretty formidable incubator for lesser-known talent for this very reason. So many actors have been "discovered" through an appearance in a "Star Wars" film, whether they be relative unknowns or craft-focused character actors. Nowadays, it seems like it's less a question of whether someone will join that galaxy far, far away, but when.

Casting for something as huge as "Star Wars," however, is always going to be tricky. The franchise needs actors with star power for sure, but the more they can "disappear" into the world, the better. Fortunately, there are still so many underrated actors out there that could really bring something new to "Star Wars." Here are 10 actors that would be absolutely wizard in the "Star Wars" universe.

Hiroyuki Sanada

There's a reason why "Lost" showrunner Damon Lindelof once called Hiroyuki Sanada "the Japanese Harrison Ford": the guy is leading man material, full-stop. Unfortunately, it's taken a bit of time for Hollywood to see the vision. Though he's been a constant fixture in genre films for decades, his roles are generally brief — like his appearances in "Westworld" or "Avengers: Endgame" — and too often some kind of riff on the surly martial arts master he portrayed in "The Last Samurai."

Of course, Sanada isn't the only actor in Hollywood working to transcend archetypes. No matter the role, the actor always manages to be memorable. His capacity for stealing a scene was on full display with his turn in "Bullet Train" opposite Brad Pitt, and he seems poised to continue this hot streak in "John Wick: Chapter 4" alongside Keanu Reeves and Donnie Yen. But a role in a property like "Star Wars" could be the perfect vehicle to showcase his range to the fullest, both as a performer and as a seasoned martial artist.

Michael Fassbender

Michael Fassbender is game for almost anything. Whether it's a big budget romp or an intimate, stirring character drama, the actor has the range to disappear into the world of whatever film he stars in.

If it comes as a surprise that he's yet to appear in a "Star Wars" film, it's not for lack of trying. In the early days of the sequel trilogy, Fassbender met with director J.J. Abrams to discuss a particular (yet unspecified) role in "The Force Awakens." Unfortunately, scheduling conflicts kept him from pursuing the project in earnest.

Not all hope is lost, though. There's still a chance that Fassbender will lend his incredible talents to the galaxy one day, especially if the fans have anything to say about it. He's a consistent choice for Legends characters that have yet to make their jump to the big screen, from the formidable Grand Admiral Thrawn to a jedi of the High Republic era. The possibilities are endless, if Lucasfilm is willing to give it another go.

Ruth Negga

"Star Wars" has been taking major strides toward more diversity as of late, but it hasn't always done right by its characters of color — least of all the characters portrayed by Black actresses. As the franchise eventually (and hopefully) moves further from the orbit of the very-white Skywalker saga, it creates space for more inclusive storytelling, and for more actors like the incredible Ruth Negga.

If the recent snub of "Passing" at the 2022 Academy Awards is any indication, Negga is still criminally under-appreciated. The Irish-Ethiopian actress cemented her acting chops in period fare like "Passing" and "Loving," but she's also not one to shy away from campy comic adaptations or cerebral sci-fi. Negga is a true chameleon, bringing her signature mix of pathos and play to so many disparate projects. She's mastered the art of the haunted hero and the oddly sympathetic antagonist, so she's got the range to portray either in any "Star Wars" project.

Ṣọpẹ́ Dìrísù

With performances in films like "Gangs of London," "His House," and "Mr. Malcolm's List," Ṣọpẹ́ Dìrísù is fast becoming the man of the hour. He's been a top choice for some of the most well-established franchises out there: Rumors of him succeeding Daniel Craig as the next James Bond, or Matt Ryan as the next John Constantine have been circulating in earnest. Dìrísù has even expressed interest in creating "what is ostensibly a Black Indiana Jones," so it's clear the actor is game to try his hand at action,  adventure, or fantasy in the future.

And what about sci-fi? Dìrísù hasn't ruled that out either, especially if it involves futuristic space travel. That means something like "Star Wars" is definitely on the table, and it's hard to deny that Dìrísù would be an incredible addition to the ever-expanding saga. He has the charisma to carry the emotional threads of a "Star Wars" story, and the physicality of an action star in the making. Give him a call, Lucasfilm!

Danny Ramirez

Danny Ramirez is no stranger to a blockbuster breakout. After scene-stealing turns in franchise fare like "The Falcon and the Winter Soldier" and "Top Gun: Maverick," Ramirez has established his chops on both the big and small screen. He's shadowed industry titans like Tom Cruise and worked with directors like Claire Denis, but it's high time Ramirez became a leading man in his own right. Of course, it doesn't have to happen in "Star Wars," but it's not at all difficult to imagine Ramirez heading up his own trilogy.

Ramirez is an actor that's impossible not to root for. Obviously he cuts an instantly likable figure as a hero, but even his off-kilter antagonists possess an innate watchability. Whether "Star Wars" is on his radar at all, it'd be a real joy to see him join the franchise.

Medalion Rahimi

Medalion Rahimi has been quietly and consistently dismantling stereotypes for SWANA (Southwest Asian and North African) characters since breaking out in "Still Star-Crossed." From playing an unofficial Disney princess in the Shondaland series to a special agent in "NCIS: Los Angeles," Rahimi has built up an impressive, unpredictable filmography. The Iranian-American actress is committed to defying expectations whenever possible. Like so many actors of her generation, Rahimi has avoided getting boxed into a certain type by playing a diversity of different characters.

So what's next for Rahimi? Hopefully something in the realm of science fiction. The actress spoke to L'Officiel Singapore about starring in "sci-fi action movies" in the future. The actor would also "love to play a femme fatale" one day — an archetype that has always flourished in the "Star Wars" galaxy. Emilia Clarke's own femme fatale, Qi'ra, was a standout in "Solo: A Star Wars Story," as were female antagonists like Asajj Ventress and Barriss Offee in "Star Wars: The Clone Wars." Unfortunately, few of them have really gotten their due in the grand scheme — so let's hope that, if Rahimi does pop up in a "Star Wars" story, it won't be as another underused female character.

Yoo Ah-In

If "Rogue One: A Star Wars Story" revealed anything, it's that there's a consistent demand for characters that blur the lines between good and bad. For every Luke Skywalker, there's a Cassian Andor or even a Bodhi Rook. Their stories bring some much-needed nuance to the central conflict in "Star Wars," and more importantly, help pivot the franchise away from its cyclical Skywalker saga. That creates an even bigger demand for actors that can shoulder that complexity — and if South Korean actor Yoo Ah-In isn't already on Lucasfilm's radar, it's high time they start considering him.

Few actors working today have mastered the art of getting under one's skin quite like Yoo Ah-In. It makes his relative obscurity (at least in the US) all the more confounding, especially in light of his haunting performances in "Burning" and "Hellbound," both of which were international hits. The actor has spent decades racking up credits as an unconventional leading man, but even in supporting roles, he's difficult to ignore.

Over the years, Yoo has breathed life into charismatic cult leaders, charming rouges, and hopelessly naïve everymen. He's always brought heart to the projects he appears in, whether it be a cerebral prestige drama or a campy supernatural horror — and he blends seamlessly into the world each time. Whatever the capacity, whatever the project, Yoo would be a perfect fit for "Star Wars," preferably as a character that operates in the grey areas of the galaxy.

Sonoya Mizuno

It's not easy to put "House of the Dragon" actor Sonoya Mizuno in a box. The Japan-born British actress has defied categorization since she first broke out in Alex Garland's "Ex Machina," as a mute android that also happens to possess some killer dance moves. Since then, the Mizuno's ambiguity has informed one character to the next, from an excitable bride-to-be to a morally questionable scientist. But despite her impressive resume, not many realize that it was Mizuno in "Crazy Rich Asians," "Maniac," and yes, "House of the Dragon" too.

That capacity to transform, to be multiple things at once, could be a real detriment to any actor that aims to be recognized. But Mizuno uses it to her advantage, slipping in and out of massive franchises with ease. Would she ever lend her chameleonic powers to "Star Wars"? The jury's still out on that one, but it'd be a treat to see the actor bring one of the franchise's many non-human characters to life.

Cynthia Erivo

Cynthia Erivo may have gotten her start on the stage, but she's made quick work of becoming a film star in her own right. The British actor radiates an intensity that informs some of her most compelling work. Ever since her big screen debut in "Bad Times at the El Royale," Erivo has been one to watch. She's demonstrated her prowess as a leading lady in Kasi Lemmons' "Harriet," and held her own in supporting roles in films like "Widows" and "Chaos Walking." One thing's for sure, though: Erivo has a knack for bringing an ethereal edge to any project. And with the multi-hyphenate set to star in Disney's live-action adaptation of "Pinocchio" (as the Blue Fairy — inspired casting), would it be that much of a stretch to hope she makes a light-speed jump into the "Star Wars" galaxy next?

While "Star Wars" is, of course, science fiction, it's best when it draws parallels to the western. "The Mandalorian" is one of the franchise's latest riffs on the "Man With No Name" archetype — but who's to say that there isn't room for a female character of the same ilk? Erivo would absolutely stun as an outlaw or bounty hunter, but given her impressive range, she'd also undoubtedly be incredible as a Padmé Amidala-type.

Winston Duke

If the overwhelmingly thirsty response to M'Baku in "Black Panther" is any indication, Winston Duke is a bonafide scene-stealer. But as fans would later learn in the performances that followed, Duke's got major talent to back up his, er, impressive presence. The actor has mastered action, horror, drama, and has successfully established himself apart from Marvel's lucrative universe. Of course, that hasn't stopped anyone from fan casting Duke as another underrated thirst object, one that hails from the galaxy many know and love.

Lucasfilm series "The Mandalorian" was another dark horse in terms of unconventionally-hot characters. It's true: Din Djarin is hot, and it's got as much to do with the man beneath the helmet, Pedro Pascal, as it does with the helmet itself. But the same can be said for Din's fellow Mandalorians, particularly Paz Vizsla, a descendant of the first Mandalorian Jedi. Notably, Paz is one Mandalorian who refuses to remove his helmet, so no one really knows what he looks like under there. That prompted some "Star Wars" fans to imagine Duke himself as Paz — and given their shared physicality, it's not much of a stretch.

As follow-ups like "The Book of Boba Fett" and the forthcoming "Ahsoka" series have proven, "The Mandalorian" is an effective incubator for spin-offs. Sometimes this does more harm than good, but if spin-offs are still on the table, Paz — and his ancestral line — ought to be next in line. Of course, it doesn't have to be Duke under the helmet. The actor would be a great fit for so many characters in the galaxy: a bounty hunter, a freedom fighter, even a Jedi. Again, the possibilities are endless, and Duke would be adept at portraying almost all of them.