Willem Dafoe and Rob Kazinsky joining Pacific Rim

Willem Dafoe and Rob Kazinsky are the latest names to sign up for Guillermo del Toro's Pacific Rim .

The pair join the already-cast likes of Charlie Hunnam, Idris Elba, Charlie Day and Rinko Kikuchi in the monster movie. The mouthwatering pitch sees human-piloted robots facing off against an alien threat.

Character details are relatively sparse, but apparently Defoe will be playing "a rogue scientist with expertise on alien creatures," while Kazinsky's set to be "a member of the team trying to defeat the invaders."

Interestingly, del Toro seems to have plumped for leftfield choices in terms of casting, favouring less widely-known performers over A-listers (Tom Cruise was in line for At The Mountains Of Madness , before it stalled).

Dafoe should at least add some familiar gravitas in a role that sounds tailor-made for him.

And it's good to see that erstwhile Eastenders star Kazinsky has bounced back and landed a blockbuster role, after having to depart The Hobbit for personal reasons.

Any film with Guillermo del Toro's name on the poster will grab our attention, but with this premise and cast, Pacific Rim is truly sounding like one of the most exciting films in pre-production.

Too bad we're going to have to wait until summer 2013 to see it…

Matt Maytum
Editor, Total Film

I'm the Editor at Total Film magazine, overseeing the running of the mag, and generally obsessing over all things Nolan, Kubrick and Pixar. Over the past decade I've worked in various roles for TF online and in print, including at GamesRadar+, and you can often hear me nattering on the Inside Total Film podcast. Bucket-list-ticking career highlights have included reporting from the set of Tenet and Avengers: Infinity War, as well as covering Comic-Con, TIFF and the Sundance Film Festival.