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Lupita Nyong'o and Gwendoline Christie cast in new Star Wars movie

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Academy Award winner Lupita Nyong'o and Game of Thrones actress Gwendoline Christie will be joining the cast of Star Wars: Episode VII, Lucasfilm announced Monday.

Nyong'o won the Oscar for Best Supporting Actress for her portrayal of Patsey in 12 Years a Slave, while Christie is best known for her role in Game of Thrones as Brienne of Tarth.

"I could not be more excited about Lupita and Gwendoline joining the cast of Episode VII," Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy said in the official announcement. "It's thrilling to see this extraordinarily talented ensemble taking shape."

Star Wars: Episode VII is being directed by J.J. Abrams, and co-written by both Abrams and Lawrence Kasdan, the latter of whom previously co-wrote The Empire Strikes Back and Return of the Jedi. It has a planned release date of Dec. 18, 2015.