Star Wars: The Last Jedi is finally here. While for the most part that's only cause for celebration, fans' anticipation of the eighth chapter in the Skywalker saga has been tinged with sadness, since this is the last time we'll see Carrie Fisher in her iconic role as Leia Organa on the silver screen. Just before The Last Jedi premiered at the TCL Chinese Theatre in Hollywood, Carrie Fisher was honored by her brother Todd.
Todd presented a plaque at the premiere which featured an image of her face and reads "Dedicated to Carrie by TCL Chinese Theatre, her Star Wars home since 1977 'We love you Carrie.'" The historic TCL Chinese Theatre is where George Lucas knew he had a hit on his hands, as people lined up around the block to get into to see the original Star Wars film in 1977.
Fisher passed away in December 2016, after several days in intensive care. The actress had lived with bipolar disorder for decades and had an equally long-standing struggle with with drug addiction - a factor that ultimately contributed to her death. She had just finished all of her work on the new Star Wars film at the time of her passing, but was meant to have a much larger role in Episode IX. Fisher was beloved by fans the world over for her feisty personality and her role as one of the original trio of Star Wars heroes, and her passing was met with an outpouring of grief and touching tributes, which is already being renewed with the release of The Last Jedi.
‘Dedicated to Carrie by the TCL Chinese Theatre, her Star Wars home since 1977 “We love you Carrie.”’#CarrieFisher #PrincessLeila #TCLChineseTheatres #ToddFisher #StarWars #TheLastJedi pic.twitter.com/xTQy9GwgLf— TCL Chinese Theatres (@ChineseTheatres) December 14, 2017
Star Wars: Episode IX is currently undergoing rewrites from director J.J. Abrams and screenwriter Chris Terrio, after Disney parted ways with former director Colin Trevorrow. Leia was supposed to play a larger role, and in fact was meant to be the driving force behind the film, just like Han Solo in The Force Awakens and Luke in The Last Jedi. Kathleen Kennedy refuted any early rumors that Leia would appear as a CGI character, and assured fans that her lack of presence in the next installment would be handled delicately. Rian Johnson, director of The Last Jedi, recently commented on her last performance saying, “Her performance is the best tribute possible. There is an extra layer cast over her performance. The places she goes to emotionally in it are going to mean a lot to fans.”
Fisher was cast in the original 1977 Star Wars as Princess Leia Organa, leader of the Rebel Alliance, making it her second appearance in a feature film. She was beloved by her fellow cast members and known for possessing a marvelous sense of humor and being wonderfully personable. Mark Hamill recently told The Mirror, "I'm angry because she should be here now, looking forward to the next one, flipping the bird and making me laugh. I still can't get my head around the fact that she has gone, because she was so vital, so strong."
- Star Wars 8/Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017) release date: Dec 15, 2017
- Star Wars 9 / Star Wars: Episode IX (2019) release date: Dec 20, 2019