Alden Ehrenreich is tipped to star as Han Solo but who is he?

Alden Ehrenreich

You have probably never heard of him before, but Alden Ehrenreich is an actor on the up in Hollywood.

The 26-year-old is the favourite to play a young Han Solo in an upcoming Star Wars spin-off film.

The untitled movie will focus on the character's life before he links up with the rebel alliance.

It will be directed by Christopher Miller and Phil Lord, who were the team behind 21 Jump Street.

Actor Harrison Ford's Han Solo character from 'Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi' is shown on screen while musicians perform during 'Star Wars: In Concert' at the Orleans Arena May 29, 2010 in Las Vegas, Nevada
Image caption Harrison Ford famously portrayed Han Solo in the original Star Wars film franchise

Ehrenreich has reportedly moved to the front of the line for the role after screen tests, according to Deadline.

"Sources with knowledge of the casting process, said that Ehrenreich is now leading the pack after after an impressive performance," the report claims.

Disney expect the Han Solo film to be released on 25 May 2018.

Who exactly is Alden Ehrenreich?

Alden Ehrenreich poses for a portrait in Los Angeles.
Image caption He's nailing the brooding look

Alden was born in Los Angeles, California, to Sari and Mark Ehrenreich.

At the age of 14, he was discovered at a friend's bat mitzvah by none other than Steven Spielberg.

The legendary director was impressed by an amateur film featuring Ehrenreich, which was being played at the Jewish celebration.

Spielberg helped push him into acting gigs on hit TV shows like CSI: Crime Scene Investigation and Supernatural.

Alden Ehrenreich in Tetro
Image caption Ehrenreich's breakthrough film role came in Francis Ford Coppola's Tetro

He then spent several years at New York University, where he took acting classes and even a course on the atomic bomb, but left before finishing his degree.

Alden's big film break came in 2009 when he was cast in Tetro directed by Francis Ford Coppola, the guy behind The Godfather trilogy.

The performance led to him being dubbed 'the new Leonardo DiCaprio' by the widely-respected film critic Roger Ebert.

Actors Tilda Swinton, George Clooney, Alden Ehrenreich, Josh Brolin,and Channing Tatum pose during a photocall to promote the movie 'Hail, Caesar!'
Image caption Alden (centre) stars in Hail, Caesar! with (left to right) Tilda Swinton, George Clooney, Josh Brolin and Channing Tatum

He can currently be seen in cinemas as a singing cowboy in the latest Coen Brothers film Hail, Caesar!

With more movies due out over the next year alongside the likes of Jennifer Aniston, and potentially the lead role in the Han Solo film, Alden Ehrenreich is a name you'll have to get used to saying.

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