star wars 7 Michael Arndt To Draft Star Wars: Episode VII   Studio Interested In Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia & Han Solo Featuring?

Unless you’ve been living under a substantially sized rock this past fortnight, you would know that in conjunction with the Walt Disney Company acquiring George Lucas’ LucasFilm for $4.05 billion, a 2015 release has been announced for ’Star Wars: Episode VII,’ followed by a new ‘Star Wars’ film every two to three years. Today Vulture bring word that Oscar winning screenwriter Michael Arndt is said to be the leading contender to pen the screenplay for Star Wars: Episode VII.’ Arndt was nominated for an Oscar for ‘Toy Story 3,’ won an Oscar for ‘Little Miss Sunshine,’ and wrote both ‘The Hunger Games: Catching Fire’ and the Tom Cruise-starring ‘Oblivion,’ which are currently shooting. The Pixar favourite has reportedly written a 40 to 50 page treatment for the film and is likely to be at least one of the writers when the Disney/Lucasfilm project begins shooting in 2014.

Additionally, sources tell Vulture that Disney/LucasFilm want to bring back the three central characters of the original ‘Star Wars': a much older Luke Skywalker, Princess Leia, and Han Solo. While no deals are in place with any of the original actors at this moment in time, sources say the studio has high ambitions to sign up Mark Hamill, and EW recently reported that Harrison Ford was open to the idea of returning. Arndt’s ‘Star Wars: Episode VII’ treatment is said to be soon crossing the desks of top directors, including Brad Bird, Steven Spielberg (the former producing partner of Lucasfilm co-chair Kathleen Kennedy), and J.J. Abrams. Expect further developments regarding ’Star Wars: Episode VII’ soon. UPDATE: Deadline are reporting that Michael Arndt has written a treatment for not just one, but the next three ‘Star Wars’ films. They go on to say that Arndt was brought on board by LucasFilm months ago to put together ideas to take the franchise forward.