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Olivia Cooke scores female lead in Ready Player One

One week after her name appeared on a shortlist for Steven Spielberg's next flick, sci-fi adventure Ready Player One, Olivia Cooke has already skyrocketed to the top of the high score table. THR reports that after a series of tests she nabbed the part of Samantha Cook, a virtual reality gamer who befriends the film's hero Wade Watts.

Cooke recently delivered a solid performance in Me and Earl and The Dying Girl, a turn that no doubt influenced Spielberg and his casting team. Of course, her victory means Lola Kirke and Elle Fanning are out of the race and throws doubt on whether Cooke will still be in contention for a part in Star Wars Episode VIII. Who knows? If the Amblin man's past behavior (ahem, Robopocalypse) is anything to go by; we're not gonna really let ourselves get excited until the cameras roll.

Speaking of, production should be gearing up early next year on this pop culture savvy yarn, with Spielberg in the last throes of post on The BFG. Ready Player One boots up on December 15, 2017.

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I'm GamesRadar+'s west coast Entertainment News Reporter. I'm a bit obsessed with all things Aliens and Terminator. You can find my byline on our best Netflix movies and best Netflix shows lists.