Eight actors are in the running for the lead role in 'Guardians of the Galaxy'.

Marvel Studios is casting the part of Guardians leader Peter Quill - otherwise known as Star-Lord - for its new superhero franchise and has shortlisted actors including Garrett Hedlund ('Tron Legacy'), James Marsden ('[X-Men'), Eddie Redmayne ('My Week with Marilyn') and Jim Sturgess ('Across the Universe') for the role, according to Deadline.

Other actors auditioning for the part include Joel Edgerton ('Zero Dark Thirty'), Jack Huston ('Boardwalk Empire'), Lee Pace ('Pushing Daisies') and Sullivan Stapleton ('Animal Kingdom').

'Guardians of the Galaxy' is based on the Marvel Comics series and features half-human, half-alien Quill leading a group of superheroes against an evil alien race who threaten the solar system.

Whoever lands the coveted role will join the likes of Robert Downey Jr ('Iron Man'), Chris Hemsworth ('Thor'), Mark Ruffalo ('The Avengers') and Chris Evans ('Captain America: The First Avenger') as the leading men in Marvel's lucrative film division.

Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige confirmed in April 'Guardians' will also feature the characters of Drax and Gamora.

'Slither' director James Gunn will helm the movie.

'Guardians of the Galaxy' is tentatively scheduled for release in 2014.