Joseph Gordon-LevittMarvel’s Guardians of the Galaxy will be the first original entry for Phase Two of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, due to hit the big screen in August 2014.

The new cycle kicks off this spring with Iron Man 3, and will be followed by Thor: The Dark World and Captain America: The Winter Soldier. And then comes Guardians of the Galaxy, which was officially confirmed by the studio back in July.

In the past few months, we’ve been hearing talks about who will be taking the lead, with the likes of Jim Sturgess (Cloud Atlas), Joel Edgerton (Zero Dark Thirty), Eddie Redmayne (Les Misérables), and more starting to test for the role.

Now Deadline are reporting that another new name has entered the race for one of the most sought-after roles in Hollywood right now:

Joseph Gordon-Levitt.

That ridiculously brilliant actor who you’ll recognise from The Dark Knight Rises, Inception, (500) Days of Summer, Looper, and many more films, and who will soon be making his feature directorial debut this year with Don Jon’s Addiction.

The role in contention is that of Peter Quill, the leader of the Guardians, born of a human mother and an alien father.

Interestingly, Deadline aren’t sure if Gordon-Levitt has already been offered the role, but are confident he’s in the running for it – and it would be awesome if it’s already his for the taking.

Gordon-Levitt has had a very well-deserved rise to fame in recent years, making a name for himself in both independent and blockbuster movies alike. And starring as the human lead in a real franchise-starter like Guardians of the Galaxy would be a brilliant new direction for him to take with his career.

Marvel are naturally making huge waves with their Cinematic Universe, and following the success of The Avengers this year, they’ll be wanting to shore up their upcoming slate to keep the audience’s interest piqued.

I remain hopeful that the rumour that Gordon-Levitt could be playing Batman in Warner Bros.’ upcoming Justice League movie is true (even though his execs have denied the rumour). If Gordon-Levitt is indeed in the running for Guardians of the Galaxy, it might create a sort of conflict between Marvel and DC, but we can still hope until told otherwise.

James Gunn (Super) was hired back in August to take the helm for the upcoming film, and is set to direct from a script co-written by himself, Chris McCoy, and Nicole Perlman.

Guardians of the Galaxy is set for release on 1st August, 2014, and that is a date that can’t come fast enough. Production will hopefully be getting underway very soon this year, so keep your fingers crossed that our list of possible candidates will be narrowed down to a single choice before long. And be sure to let us know what you think of Gordon-Levitt’s possible casting as Quill in the comments below.