Carrie Fisher's Death & Leia's Star Wars Future

Star Wars: The Force Awakens - Leia (Carrie Fisher)

It's been nearly a year since the Star Wars community tragically lost the legendary Carrie Fisher, and fans are still wondering how her passing will impact the galaxy far, far away moving forward. The actress will appear as General Leia Organa one final time in this December's The Last Jedi, which will definitely be an emotional moment for all. Writer/director Rian Johnson has promised fans Fisher's performance will be cathartic for viewers, as several of her scenes are said to be highly emotional. After Leia had just a small part in The Force Awakens, it's great to see she is a principal part of the proceedings this time around.

Since the tragedy occurred, there have been multiple stories regarding Fisher and Leia's future in the Star Wars film series, and as fans make their final preparations to see the saga continue, we're rounding all of those up to provide moviegoers with an overview of the situation and what it means for the final two installments of the sequel trilogy. On this page, we'll cover the ramifications for Last Jedi.

Carrie Fisher Filmed All of Her Last Jedi Scenes

In the immediate aftermath of Fisher's death, this was one of the first questions on many minds. It didn't take long for the trades to report that Fisher had, indeed, shot all of her Episode VIII scenes prior to her death. Johnson started rolling the cameras back in February 2016 and moved efficiently through the schedule, wrapping principal photography in July of that year. It's unknown when any of the customary pickups took place, but it's comforting to know Fisher had completed The Last Jedi.

Related: Rian Johnson's Favorite Carrie Fisher Memory

Finalizing Leia's Dialogue

Rian Johnson and Carrie Fisher as General Leia on the set of Star Wars The Last Jedi

While Fisher filmed all of her necessary scenes, Johnson and his team had some difficulty in post-production. A typical part of the editing process is ADR (additional dialogue recording), where actors will re-record their lines in order to improve the quality of the final cut's sound. Sometimes, what was recorded on-set isn't good enough, so the talent has to be brought back in the controlled environment of a studio. Fisher did not complete her Last Jedi ADR prior to her death, so Johnson and the Lucasfilm sound department had to pull off some tricks in order to finalize Leia's dialogue. Johnson admitted in an interview with Rolling Stone it was tough, but credited his collaborators and ensured the end result works.

Leia's Role Did Not Change

Considering the studio's original plan for Episode IX (more on this in a minute), it wouldn't have been implausible if some alterations to The Last Jedi's story were made in order to address real-life events. However, that was not the case. Disney CEO Bob Iger confirmed as such earlier this year, and this point has been reiterated throughout the publicity tour. Fisher's last performance will be seen as it was intended, with no changes to the finished product. There's no denying this is probably for the best and is a great way of respecting Fisher's enduring legacy.

Leia's Last Jedi Role Is Larger Than The Force Awakens

Episode VII was very much Han Solo's movie, as the iconic smuggler was the returning original trilogy veteran with the most amount of screen time. Leia appeared in more scenes than her twin brother, Luke, but she was arguably pushed to the back burner a bit so J.J. Abrams could focus more on the new characters. With the introductions of Rey, Finn, Kylo Ren, and the rest out of the way, Johnson beefed up Leia's role in The Last Jedi so she had more to do. The movie's title is a direct reference to Luke, but as leader of the Resistance, Leia shouldn't be shortchanged this time around.

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Key Release Dates
  • Star Wars 8/Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017) release date: Dec 15, 2017
  • Star Wars 9 / Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (2019) release date: Dec 20, 2019
  • Solo: A Star Wars Story (2018) release date: May 25, 2018
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