LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Oscar-winning actress Lupita Nyong‘o has been cast in the upcoming “Star Wars: Episode VII,” Walt Disney Co’s Lucasfilm said on Monday.
Nyong‘o, whose first film role last year in “12 Years a Slave,” earned her the Academy Award for best supporting actress, will also joining Gwendoline Christie of HBO’s “Game of Thrones,” in the film. Their roles have not been announced.
Nyong‘o, 31, a Kenyan born in Mexico and educated at Yale University, became the darling of this year’s Hollywood awards season for her emotionally raw portrayal of Patsey as well as her fashion choices on the red carpet.
“Star Wars: Episode VII,” will open worldwide on Dec. 18, 2015, and will also star Adam Driver, Oscar Isaac, Andy Serkis, John Boyega and Daisy Ridley.
The film, directed by “Star Trek” filmmaker J.J. Abrams, will also feature original “Star Wars” actors Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher and Mark Hamill.
Disney has promised three new installments in George Lucas’ six-film saga after it purchased Lucasfilm in 2012 for $4.05 billion.
Disney also plans to release “Star Wars” spinoff films that are considered standalones from the saga.
Reporting by Eric Kelsey; Editing by Mary Milliken