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New Additions To The 'Star Wars' Writing Team

Brad Bird squashes directing rumors on Twitter

Sources tell THR that Lawrence Kasdan and Simon Kinberg have closed deals to "write either 'Episode VIII' or 'Episode IX' — their exact division of responsibilities is yet to be determined — and they will also come aboard to produce the films."

The studio got the relaunch off to a great start after hiring Michael Arndt to script "Episode VII" and adding these two members to their team is a very strategic choice considering both have franchise experience. An official announcement from Lucasfilm and Disney Studios will appear on the StarWars.com website.

Kasdan is a veteran when it comes to the "Star Wars" franchise. He scripted two of the original trilogy films; "The Empire Strikes Back" (1980) and "Return of the Jedi" (1983). He also worked with Lucas and Spielberg when he wrote the screenplay for "Raiders of the Lost Ark." Kasdan’s other film credits include "Grand Canyon," "Wyatt Earp," "The Bodyguard," "The Accidental Tourist," "The Big Chill," and "Body Heat."

Kinberg is co-writing on another big franchise, the upcoming "X-Men: Days of Future Past" and was a producer on "X-Men: First Class." He also is producing "Cinderella" for Disney. His other screenwriting credits include "Sherlock Holmes," "Jumper," "Mr. & Mrs. Smith," and "xXx: State of the Union."

In other "Star Wars" news, purveyors of gossip can cross another name off their list of potential directors. The director of "Mission: Impossible — Ghost Protocol" and "The Incredibles" isn’t headed to a galaxy far, far away. And while he had much praise for those involved with the project, he will not be joining them. When asked by fans, he wrote the following on Twitter:

As expected, this launched an avalanche of tweets from disappointed fans. The next film he will be directing is a sci-fi mystery called "1952," written by Damon Lindelof and starring George Clooney. He later tweeted:

Disney plans to generate a film every other year starting in 2015. To fuel your speculation for who might be tapped to helm, read Airlock Alpha's The Saga Continues..." for our short list of potential directors. Do you agree? Tell us your thoughts in the comment section below.

About the Author

Lisa Guetzkow is the Chief Operations Officer for Trek Radio and Holonet Radio, members of the Suraya Media Network. She currently lives in Southern California. Follow her on Twitter (@RadioRisa) or tune in anytime 24/7 to request your favorite music.
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