Cumberbatch Joins Star Trek Sequel

Noel Clarke also aboard!

The sneaky British infiltration of JJ Abrams’ revival of Star Trek’s cinematic fortunes continues apace! With Simon Pegg already entrenched as Scotty in the first film (Pegg just jetted to LA to begin work on the sequel), the next addition was Alice Eve, who signed on late last year. Now two of the UK’s brightest filmmaking talents are heading into space, with Benedict Cumberbatch and Noel Clarke announced as leaping aboard.

This being the Abrams/Damon Lindelof/Roberto Orci/Alex Kurtzman Trek universe, both actors' exact roles are being kept a secret for now. Variety was able to dig up, however, that Clarke is playing a family man with a wife and young daughter and The Hollywood Reporter has it that Cumberbatch will slip into the role of the villain that Benicio Del Toro was being courted for.

Cumberbatch has been pinging Hollywood's radar something rotten recently, between his superb work on the BBC's Sherlock and supporting roles in Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy and War Horse. He's already been snapped up for two evil roles, agreeing to play greedy dragon Smaug and the Necromancer for Peter Jackson's Hobbit films.

Meanwhile, along with his directing/writing/acting duties in the likes of Adulthood and, Noel Clarke already has space (and time) travel experience thanks to his time spent as Mickey Smith in Doctor Who’s TARDIS. This time, we doubt he’ll be worried about being seen as the tin dog.

They are the newest additions to the cast, which already boasts Peter Weller as a villain and the returning regular crew complement, including Chris Pine, Zachary Quinto, Karl Urban, John Cho, Anton Yelchin, Zoe Saldana and Pegg.

Currently known only as Star Trek 2, the film starts shooting shortly and will be out in the US on May 17, 2013.