Luc Besson announced on his Instagram account that Ethan Hawke has joined the cast of his $180M 3D sci-fi epic Valerian based on the French 1967 graphic novel series by Pierre Christin and Jean-Claude Mézières. No further details were available at this late hour by EuropaCorp in regards to which role Hawke will take. Besson exclaimed on Instagram, “Ethan Hawke will play in #Valerian! I want to work with for years! We gonna have fun!!!”
Hawke joins a cast that includes Dane DeHaan and Cara Delavingne, who are respectively playing Valerian and Laureline, a pair of spatio-temporal agents who help defend an utopian 28th century Earth and its neighboring planets from bad guys, with the pair’s adventures rooted in space opera and time travel themes. Clive Owen plays Commander Arün Filitt. Rihanna joined the cast in October.
Back in July, Besson showed off the storyboards and concepts to a small group of journalists at Comic-Con. Valerian has been a passion project for him. He was ready to make the movie years ago, however, tossed the script after seeing Avatar, so as to mount a more groundbreaking feature. Valerian reps Besson’s return to sci-fi as a director after his 1997 spectacle The Fifth Element. That film had 180 shots of special effects, however, on Valerian, Besson has 2,370 planned.
Hawke received his fourth Oscar nomination earlier this year — his second in the supporting actor category — for his turn in Boyhood.
EuropaCorp’s RED distribution label is releasing Valerian on July 21, 2017. Hawke is repped by CAA and MGMT Entertainment. The actor recently starred as jazz trumpeter Chet Baker in Born to Be Blue and he’s also starring in MGM/Sony’s remake of The Magnificent Seven which opens on Sept. 23, 2016. Below is Besson’s Instagram: