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So what’s it like to find out you’ve joined the cast of the highly anticipated Star Wars Episode VII? Irish actor Domhnall Gleeson knows:

“It’s nuts. It’s absolutely nuts, and your heart’s going like that,” gasps Domhnall Gleeson, pounding his chest rapidly. “But you’re also like, ‘What an amazing way to spend a Tuesday!'”

The 30 year-old Gleeson – whose credits include Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows Parts 1 & 2, About Time, True Grit, Dredd, Frank, and Calvary (alongside his father, actor Brendan Gleeson) – is bound by a strict non-disclosure agreement, so he can’t actually reveal anything about the plot or the character he’s playing. It’s clear, however, that he’s pleased to be working with director J.J. Abrams:

“I never thought I’d be in the same room as JJ Abrams. It’s just an amazing opportunity, not for my career but for life experience and for the film experience, to be a part of something different to anything else I’ve done.”

The former Tony Award nominee (in 2006 for his role as Davey in the play The Lieutenant of Inishmore) has a serious work ethic, as well:

“There’s a desire not to repeat yourself,” the Dubliner frowns, “or to become bored with what you’re doing because then the work will suffer and it just won’t remain vital. The experience and getting the job done are what counts. It all comes back to making sure you give it everything every time and not being lazy, ever.”

While he’s destined to become a household name upon the release of Episode VII, his family keeps him grounded and focused on what’s most important in this world:

“Dad and my whole family are amazing in that way,” he says. “My brother Brian – who is a great actor – my other two brothers, my dad and my mam, they’re good for reminding me that it’s also just a job, and although that sounds unflattering for the project, it’s really important. What you’re doing is saying you have a life outside of it, and while you have to be excited about it and give it everything, it’s still a job and you have life over here too. So as much as the acting advice I can get from my dad is great, life advice is also very important in these situations.”

Episode VII begins filming this month at Pinewood Studios in London. It is due to be released on December 18, 2015.

In the meantime, check out the trailer for Gleeson’s latest film, Frank (co-starring Michael Fassbender and Maggie Gyllenhaal):

Sources: Irish Independent, IMDb, and YouTube

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