'Star Wars Episode VII' Cast: Oscar Winner Lupita Nyong'o & 'Game Of Thrones' Gwendoline Christie Officially Announced For Upcoming Film

By Matthew Buzzi , Updated Jun 02, 2014 07:13 PM EDT

Though there was some outcry against the initial Star Wars Episode VII cast announcement for including too few female actors and characters, the two new members of the team may put those complaints to rest.

Official Star Wars Episode VII Cast List Announced

Academy Award-winning actress Lupita Nyong'o and Game of Thrones' Gwendoline Christie have been announced as part of the cast for the upcoming J.J. Abrams-directed Star Wars film.

Nyong'o recently captured the world's attention for her role in Steve McQueen's Best Picture 12 Years A Slave, for which she won an Oscar for Best Supporting Actress. The actress was linked with a role in Star Wars before the official cast was announced, but the rumor died down once her name was absent from the initial list.

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Nyong'o, 31, was born in Mexico City, but her family moved back to its native Kenya shortly after. She graduated from the Yale School of Drama, and her role in 12 Years A Slave was the first major position her career.

Christie, born and raised in England, has gained notice for her current role as Brienne of Tarth in HBO's Game of Thrones TV series. She's also slated to play Commander Lyme in the upcoming The Hunger Games: Mockingjay Part 2. Given all of these simultaneous, relatively major roles, it's fair to say this represents the peak of the 36 year-old's career so far.

It's unclear who the two--or anyone in the announced cast--will play in the film, but we're not likely to hear plot and character announcements for a while longer. Star Wars Episode VII is set for release on December 18, 2015.

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