With a franchise spanning over 50 years (and counting), James Bond is arguably one of the biggest cinematic icons in history. Even with that reputation, few expected 007's last big-screen adventure - the Sam Mendes-directed Skyfall - to become the franchise's highest-grossing film yet and the first to earn more than $1 billion at the worldwide box office.
Accordingly, expectations for Spectre, the next film in the series, have been incredibly high. News of the film's title confirmed that the terrorist organization Bond faced in past films would finally be making its long-awaited return to the franchise, and cast additions like two-time Oscar winner Christoph Waltz (Django Unchained), Monica Bellucci (The Matrix Reloaded), Dave Bautista (Guardians of the Galaxy) and others have only intensified excitement surrounding the film. Now we can add one more name to that list.
Sony has announced that Stephanie Sigman will appear in Spectre as a mysterious character known only as "Estrella." Plot details remain under wraps at this point (we're still unclear if Waltz will be playing SPECTRE head Ernst Blofeld, as has been rumored). So it's hard to decipher whether the Mexican actress - perhaps best known for her role on short-lived FX series The Bridge - will be friend or foe to Bond when she pops up onscreen.
Considering the last-minute addition of Sigman to the in-production project, her part is unlikely to be a particularly large one. After all, Bond films are known to fill their cast with a broad range of international stars, and it's not uncommon for him to encounter a number of ladies throughout his mission. With Naomie Harris returning as Eve Moneypenny and Léa Seydoux's role sounding like she'll be one of Bond's main allies, it's probably safe to say that Sigman's character is either aligned with SPECTRE or finds herself caught in the middle of the MI-6/SPECTRE faceoff.
All speculation aside, casting Sigman is clearly an effort by Sony to round out the international cast of one of its biggest global box office tentpoles, and it's hard to argue with the business sense behind this decision as well as the opportunity it will give to an up-and-coming actress. Here's hoping that moviegoers not familiar with Sigman - who'll next be seen in the television series Narcos - get a good idea of what's she capable of from her (most likely limited ) screen time opposite Daniel Craig.
What kind of role do you think Sigman will play in Spectre? Sound off with your thoughts.
Spectre hits theaters on November 6, 2015.