The Favourite’s Nicholas Hoult will soon go from pushing Emma Stone into a ditch to going toe-to-toe with Tom Cruise: The actor, best-known for playing Beast in the past four X-Men films, has joined the cast of Christopher McQuarrie’s Mission: Impossible sequels, and according to THR, he’ll be playing the villain.
McQuarrie revealed Hoult’s casting via Instagram Thursday, posting a photo of the actor captioned, “Say, [Nicholas Hoult], care to raise a little hell?” Replying in a comment, Hoult wrote, “Love to. Though why stop at a little?”
Say, @nicholashoult, care to raise a little hell?
A post shared by Christopher McQuarrie; (@christophermcquarrie) on
Hoult’s is the fourth casting McQuarrie has announced in this fashion, following those of Hayley Atwell, Pom Klementieff and Shea Whigham. The four newcomers join franchise cornerstone Tom Cruise and Mission: Impossible – Fallout breakout Rebecca Ferguson, the latter of whom made her M:I debut in 2015’s Rogue Nation, also overseen by writer-director McQuarrie. Info on the four additions’ roles is scarce, though McQuarrie suggested via Instagram that Guardians of the Galaxy star Klementieff will be playing a “femme fatale,” and teased of Whigham’s character, “You won’t see him coming … ”
McQuarrie is currently at work on two new M:I films—the franchise is riding higher than ever after the resounding success of Fallout, which was not only one of 2018’s best movies, but also one of its most profitable. It’s unclear whether Hoult will be the big bad of both new missions, but he’s certainly deserving of such a showcase: After stepping onto the blockbuster stage with X-Men, Hoult would go on to play supporting roles in Mad Max: Fury Road—no less than Paste’s movie of the decade—and the aforementioned, Oscar-winning period film The Favourite, standing out in each, even from a pair of supremely talented packs. Last year, he starred in the title role of literary biopic Tolkien, though the film was met with a lukewarm critical reception and didn’t move the needle much. That’s quite unlikely to be the case with regard to his role in the M:I sequels.
The next M:I adventure, the seventh in the series, is set to open July 23, 2021, with the eighth to follow on Aug. 5, 2022. Whether you choose to accept them or not, further updates on the films will certainly be forthcoming.