Thursday, Lucasfilm announced a big change-up in the screenwriters for the next film in the Star Wars series. Michael Arndt (Little Miss Sunshine) is being replaced by the team of director J.J. Abrams and Lawrence Kasdan (who has previously been serving as a consultant for the film) in a surprise twist. For those unfamiliar with Kasdan, you may recognize his body of works: The Empire Strikes Back, Return of the Jedi, and Raiders of the Lost Ark.
"I am very excited about the story we have in place and thrilled to have Larry and J.J. working on the script," states Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy. "There are very few people who fundamentally understand the way a Star Wars story works like Larry, and it is nothing short of incredible to have him even more deeply involved in its return to the big screen. J.J. of course is an incredible storyteller in his own right. Michael Arndt has done a terrific job bringing us to this point and we have an amazing filmmaking and design team in place already prepping for production."
Currently, the studio seems to be remaining mum on the topic of Arndt's departure. This does bring into question whether the original planned direction for the film will continue (Arndt had originally drafted a 40-50 page document), or if Abrams is going to push more towards something like his Star Trek reboots.