We don't know a great deal about upcoming Star Wars spin-off and A New Hope prequel Rogue One at the moment, but one thing we seem to know now is that villain-faced Mads Mikkelsen is not playing the bad guy.
Hannibal and Casino Royale star reiterated this fact in an interview with a Danish new site. So despite the fact that it's not hard to imagine him saying "we've been expecting you Mr Bond" while stroking a white cat, the character he's playing, apparently called 'Galen', is not a nefarious evil mastermind.
The big rumour is that he is the designer of the Death Star, taking over from the Attack of the Clones' Geonosians and solving many design problems for the Empire. That same rumour also claims that he has an attack of concious, and defects to the Rebels via his daughter (supposedly the character played by Felicity Jones). Maybe that sudden change in tune is the reason why there was such a horrendous design flaw in the first iteration of the space station/super-weapon
So if all this is even partly true, who the heck is playing the villain?
We can say with relative certainty that the villain won't be Felicity Jones, Riz Ahmed, Donnie Yen, Diego Luna, or Jiang Wen. That's because they all feature on the previously released cast photo, and appear to be the members of the titular 'Rogue One' team. That leaves Alan Tudyk, Forest Whitaker, and Ben Mendelsohn.
According to rumours, Alan Tudyk (who was previously revealed to be a mo-cap characters) is playing a Rebel droid, while Forest Whitaker is a wounded veteran speculated to be some sort of Rebel-affiliated Bounty Hunter. So that's them out.
There are, of course, two big villains who already exist in Star Wars during the time Rogue One is set - Darth Vader and Grand Moff Tarkin. It's highly unlikely that Tarkin's appearance would be anything more than a cameo, since finding someone who looks exactly like Peter Cushing could be tricky. If not impossible. As for Darth Vader, there's no reason why he couldn't be involved in the film. In fact rumours claim that Lucasfilm has commissioned recreations of Vader's armour. But is he the big bad? Probably not. Lucasfilm has been rather conservative with using Vader in Star Wars: Rebels, and James Earl Jones probably doesn't come cheap.
That leaves Ben Mendelsohn, better known as 'that creepy business guy' from The Dark Knight Rises.
He's the current front-runner for the film's villain, and according to sources that villain will be a character in an all-white uniform with a very large white cape. In fact, those same sources speculate that he's playing Grand Admiral Thrawn - a blue-skinned Imperial officer who took over Imperial forces after Return of the Jedi in the now-defunct Expanded Universe.
But of course speculation is speculation, and all these rumours could be 100 per cent bogus. Heck, Mikkelsen could be lying to us so he doesn't get in trouble with his Disney-owned overlords.
Does anyone else have any ideas?