A Glasgow student is preparing to enter a galaxy far away after being cast in the new Star Wars film.

Crystal Clarke, who is studying drama at the Royal Conservatoire in Glasgow, was given a part in the much-anticipated next instalment of the sci-fi trilogy after attending an open audition for the film.

Thousands of hopefuls turned up at the Glasgow audition which was held in the Science Centre late last year.

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Film-makers holding the open auditions said they were looking for a young, beautiful, smart, athletic woman to play a 'street smart and strong' orphaned teenage girl in the movie. They are also searching for a handsome, smart, athletic youngster to fill the role of a 'smart, capable and courageous' man in his late teens or early 20s.

Clarke, who is American, has appeared on stage and screen and is set to be seen in her first feature The Moon and the Sun, alongside Pierce Brosnan and William Hurt in 2015.

Disney and Lucasfilm have announced that British actor Pip Andersen has also secured a part in Episode VII, which will be directed by JJ Abrams. The parkour specialist recently demonstrated his skills in a Spiderman advert for Sony.

Over 37,000 people attended open casting calls, which were held in 11 cities across the US and UK, for the film, with a further 30,000 submitting online auditions.

Kathleen Kennedy, producer and Lucasfilm president, said: "The Star Wars universe has always been about discovering and nurturing young talent and in casting Episode VII we wanted to remain absolutely faithful to this tradition. We are delighted that so many travelled to see us at the open casting calls and that we have been able to make Crystal and Pip a part of the film."

Meanwhile, it has also been announced that production on the new film will be suspended for two weeks after Harrison Ford broke his ankle during filming of the much-anticipated sequel at Pinewood Studios outside London.

Disney announced shooting would be halted for two weeks in August to adjust the production schedule following Ford's injury.

Disney had said earlier that Ford's injury would not cause any delays.

The studio said Episode VII is still "on track" to wrap in the autumn and be released in December 2015.

The accident is believed to have involved a spacecraft door on the Millennium Falcon falling on Ford's leg.

His recuperation was expected to take up to two months.

Lucasfilm and Disney said: "Harrison is doing well and is looking forward to returning to the set soon."

Last month it was announced that Oscar-winning 12 Years A Slave star Lupita Nyong'o and British actress Gwendoline Christie, best known for Game Of Thrones, have joined the cast of the film.

Mark Hamill (Luke Skywalker), Carrie Fisher (Princess Leia) Anthony Daniels (C-3PO), Peter Mayhew (Chewbacca) and Kenny Baker (R2-D2) are all reprising their roles in the movie.

The film is scheduled for release on December 18, 2015.