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‘Little Miss Sunshine’ Writer Michael Arndt to Pen ‘Star Wars:Episode VII’

Michael Arndt, who won an Academy Award for “Little Miss Sunshine” screenplay, has been hired to write “Star Wars: Episode VII”

Michael Arndt, who won an Academy Award for “Little Miss Sunshine,” has been hired to write the screenplay for “Star Wars: Episode VII,” Lucasfilm announced on its  Star Wars website on Friday.  

The news follows reports the ‘”Toy Story 3” scribe was the leading contender for the job and had turned in a 50-page treatment for the seventh installment in the epic franchise.

The film is slated to be released in 2015 and will launch a new trilogy under Disney, which acquired Lucasfilm for $4.05 billion on Oct. 30.

"Star Wars" films have earned a total of $4.4 billion at the box office worldwide.

George Lucas is serving as a creative consultant on the films, with Kathleen Kennedy, the current co-chairwoman of Lucasfilm, executive producing.   

Arndt won the Oscar for best original screenplay in 2006 for  “Little Miss Sunshine” and was nominated for best adapted screenplay for writing “Toy Story 3” (2010). He is a co-writer with Simon Beaufoy on "Hunger Games: Catching Fire," which is scheduled for released in 2013.