British actor/writer/director Noel Clarke has ascended to the big leagues the old-fashioned way; by working his ass off. Having started off in the cast of long-running sitcom "Auf Wiedersehen, Pet," he broke out on-camera as Mickey Smith, boyfriend of companion Rose Tyler in the 2005 revival of "Doctor Who," dropping in and out of the show and its spin-offs across the next five years. But simultaneously, he was also carving out a screen career, penning and starring in the gritty drama "Kidulthood" in 2006, and then directing its follow-up, "Adulthood," in 2008, after the film became a surprise hit.
He's since went on to direct the crime caper "18.104.22.168," with Emma Roberts, and will star in no fewer than three self-penned film
s across 2012: rom-com "The Knot," sports drama "Fast Girls," and sci-fi horror "Storage 24;" picking up an Orange Rising Star BAFTA along the way. So far, he's yet to break out much on the big-screen in Hollywood, his biggest notable role outside of "Doctor Who" being in Neil Marshall's "Centurion," but he's just landed a pretty big boost, as Variety report that he's the latest addition to the cast of J.J. Abrams tentpole sequel "Star Trek 2."
While the specifics of his part are being kept under wraps, the trade reveals that Clarke will play a family man, with a wife and daughter, which doesn't narrow it down; is a new Starfleet officer? A follower of Khan? A Tribble? Either way, it's good to see his hard work paying off with a role in one of the biggest films of 2013. Clarke joins fellow Brit Alice Eve and Peter Weller in the film's cast, while Edgar Ramirez and Jordi Molla were, last we heard, fighting it out to replace Benicio Del Toro as the film's villain, who may or may not be classic franchise antagonist Khan. Abrams had better hurry up in his decision, as shooting's set to get underway later this month, with a release date already set for May 17, 2013.