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Star Wars cast announced for Episode VII

The cast of the upcoming Star Wars film has been released, with the original trio of stars among the list of names.

Harrison Ford, Carrie Fisher and Mark Hamill, who played Han Solo, Princess Leia and Luke Skywalker, will star in the film, along with Anthony Daniels (C-3PO), Peter Mayhew (Chewbacca), and Kenny Baker (R2D2).

They will be joined by newcomers Adam Driver, John Boyega, Daisy Ridley, Oscar Isaac, Andy Serkis, Domhnall Gleeson, and Max von Sydow.

The new Star Wars cast at a read-through today
The first roundtable script reading with the cast was held at a top secret location today. Credit: starwars.com

Director J.J. Abrams said the team are "so excited to finally share the cast of Star Wars: Episode VII. It is both thrilling and surreal to watch the beloved original cast and these brilliant new performers come together to bring this world to life, once again".

Star Wars: Episode VII is being directed by J.J. Abrams from a screenplay by himself and Lawrence Kasdan.

Kathleen Kennedy, J.J. Abrams, and Bryan Burk are producing, and John Williams returns as the composer.

The movie opens worldwide on December 18, 2015.

Read: New Star Wars film set 30 years after Return of the Jedi

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R2-D2 set for new Star Wars film

R2-D2, right, with C-3PO on the set of Star Wars
R2-D2, right, is the first confirmed character for the upcoming Star Wars film. Credit: DPA

R2-D2 is the first confirmed character returning to Star Wars when filming of the next movie begins at Pinewood Studios in May.

Announcing the start of filming, the official Star Wars website said yesterday that the film would "star a trio of new young leads along with some very familiar faces".

It has now emerged that the popular droid will feature in the new film, but there is no word as yet on whether the likes of C-3PO will also feature.

Bob Iger, the chief executive of Disney, which is behind the film, said yesterday that R2-D2 - whose mission to deliver secret blueprints to Obi Wan Kenobi kickstarted the first Star Wars adventure - was the "official cast member" he would announce.

The movie - so far known only as Star Wars: Episode VII - is being directed by JJ Abrams. It is set to be released in December of next year.

New Star Wars film set 30 years after Return of the Jedi

Star Wars: Episode VII will begin filming in May at Pinewood Studios in London and is set 30 years after Return of the Jedi, it has been confirmed.

The new film will 'star a trio of new young leads', according to the website. Credit: Bay Area News Group/ABACA

The official Star Wars website also said the film will "star a trio of new young leads along with some very familiar faces."

Read: Darth Vader selfie launches Star Wars Instagram

Darth Vader selfie launches Star Wars Instagram

The selfie of Darth Vader has gained more than 27,000 likes on Instagram Credit: Star Wars/Instagram

Star Wars launched its official Instagram account by posting a selfie of Darth Vader.

The image, which is captioned 'another day in the office', shows the character posing with a phone and has gained more more than 27,000 likes in less than 24 hours.

Fans of the sci-fi franchise were encouraged to sign up to the new Instagram account with a tweet which read: "It is useless to resist."

Star Wars characters descend on Washington, DC

Storm troopers mingled with locals and tourists near the famous Capitol buildings
Storm troopers mingled with locals and tourists near the famous Capitol buildings Credit: Twitter/Museum of Sci-Fi

Star Wars fans descended on the US capital in full costume as part of an event organised by the Science Fiction Museum.

The Science Fiction Museum wants to raise money to establish a permanent home for memorabilia
The Science Fiction Museum wants to raise money to establish a permanent home for memorabilia Credit: Twitter/@johnkelly

Storm troopers, imperial guards and Darth Vader himself mingled with locals and tourists in front of the famous Capitol building.

Locals posted images of the short-lived 'invasion' on Twitter
Locals posted images of the short-lived 'invasion' on Twitter Credit: Twitter/@markpsedward

The event was part of a drive by the Science Fiction Museum to raise funds for a museum building to house science fiction memorabilia, sets, props and costumes.

Darth Vader mingling with local law enforcement in Washington, DC
Darth Vader mingling with local law enforcement in Washington, DC Credit: Twitter/@markpsedward

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Star Wars auditions hit London

Stormtroopers in Leicester Square Credit: Reuters

A open casting call for the new Star Wars film is taking place this weekend in the capital.

As many as 3,000 people are expected to turn up to try and secure their place in the film, with the franchise attracting an enormous global fan base.

Producers are looking to fill two major roles - a 17 year old girl named Rachel and a character called Thomas in his early twenties.

It will be held at Twickenham Stadium today and tomorrow from 11:00 am - 3:00 pm.

Hopefuls turned away from 'Star Wars audition'

Up to a thousand people attended a UK audition today for a major Disney movie, rumoured to be the next Star Wars film.

Crowds braved the rain at the Bristol auditions for a 'major movie' said to be the new Star Wars film
Crowds braved the rain at the Bristol auditions for a 'major movie' said to be the new Star Wars film Credit: ITV West Country

However, many big screen hopefuls were turned away from the auditions in Bristol as early as 10:30am after dedicated wannabes queued from the early hours to secure their position.

A movie hopeful turned away from today's auditions in Bristol
A movie hopeful turned away from today's auditions in Bristol Credit: ITV West Country

"We walked in the rain, we walked in the cold, we waited for this, we've been really excited and we've got here and the doors are shut," one disappointed audition hopeful told ITV West Country.

Read: Disney auditions for 'major movie' could be Star Wars

Visit ITV West Country for more on this story

Disney auditions for 'major movie' could be Star Wars

Disney is holding a series of open auditions in Britain for a "major movie" many have speculated is Star Wars: Episode VII.

Open auditions for a film thought to be Star Wars are set to be held. Credit: Bay Area News Group/ABACA

Read: Disney to release new Star Wars film in December 2015

The auditions, which begin tomorrow in Bristol, are looking for two actors - one for the role of 'Rachel', where the actress must be over 16, “beautiful, smart and athletic, and the other for 'Thomas' a “handsome, smart and athletic” man aged between 19 and 23.

Although the movie in name has not been mentioned, it has been suggested the auditions are for the latest instalment of the multi-billion pound space franchise - which is expected to be filmed at Pinewood Studios early next year and released in 2015.

The auditions start in Bristol on November 9 and 10, followed by casting calls at Manchester and Glasgow on November 16 and 17 and Dublin and London on November 23 and 24.

J.J Abrams will direct the new film and although no casting details have been given yet, actors including Daniel Day-Lewis, Benedict Cumberbatch and Saoirse Ronan have been linked to the movie.

Disney, who bought the $4 billion franchise last year, reportedly made no comment.

Read: Star Wars named nation's favourite movie soundtrack

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