The producers of the highly anticipated next instalment of Star Wars have confirmed it will be made in Britain.
The official confirmation by Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy prompted the chancellor George Osborne to claim the force is strong with the British film industry.
The seventh episode of the science fantasy saga is due to start production next year and will be screened in 2015. It will be directed by JJ Abrams, who has overseen the reboot of the rival Star Trek franchise.
Kennedy said she was “delighted that Star Wars is coming back to Britain”.
Lucasfilm representatives met with Osborne earlier this year to work on a deal to make the film in this country.
All of the six previous Star Wars movies have included UK production.
Osborne revealed the decision on Friday on Twitter: “Just confirmed: the next Star Wars film will be made in UK. Great news for our creative industries. May the force be with us … “.
“Today’s announcement that the next Star Wars film will be shot and produced in the UK is great news for fans and our creative industries, and it is clear evidence that our incentives are attracting the largest studios back to the UK”, he added in an official statement. “I am personally committed to seeing more great films and television made in Britain.”
Kennedy said: “We’ve devoted serious time and attention to revisiting the origins of Star Wars as inspiration for our process on the new movie, and I’m thrilled that returning to the UK for production and utilising the incredible talent there can be a part of that.
“Speaking from my own longstanding connection to the UK with films like Raiders of the Lost Ark, Empire of the Sun and recently War Horse, it’s very exciting to be heading back.”
Parts of previous Star Wars films were shot in studios steeped in British cinematic history, including Elstree, Shepperton, Leavesden, Ealing and Pinewood Studios.
Star Wars: Episode VII is being scripted by Toy Story 3 writer Michael Amdt and directed by Abrams.
according to guardian.co.uk