The Crown star Matt Smith has reportedly landed a "key role" in the next Star Wars film.

US entertainment magazine Variety reports that the British actor has joined Star Wars: Episode IX which is currently in production in the UK.

Although Smith, best known for playing Doctor Who and for his Emmy-nominated turn as Prince Phillip in The Crown, is linked to a "key role" in the next instalment of the Star Wars franchise, it is not yet known if he is on the side of the rebels or the evil empire.

Matt Smith, Emmy nominated for his role in The Crown, has reportedly joined Star Wars

Mark Hamill, Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac and Adam Driver will all be reprising their roles in Star Wars: Episode IX, while Keri Russell, Richard E.Grant, Dominic Monaghan and Naomi Ackie are new additions to the cast.

Directed by JJ Abrams, the film will complete the sequel trilogy following 2015's The Force Awakens and 2017's The Last Jedi.

Star Wars: Episode IX is scheduled for release on December 20, 2019.