Star Wars: The Last Jedi star Anthony Daniels comments on the performance given by the late great Carrie Fisher in the film, remarking how magical it is to watch it onscreen. Fans of the galaxy far, far away continue to mourn the passing of the franchise icon, who tragically died in late 2016 after suffering a heart attack. In her multiple appearances in the saga, Fisher perfectly embodied the character of Princess (now General) Leia, and there is much anticipation to see what sadly will be her final turn in her famous role. Prior to her death, Fisher had completed filming her Episode VIII scenes, and reportedly has a larger part when compared to The Force Awakens.
Since Last Jedi plot details are firmly being kept under wraps, it's largely unknown how Leia factors into the narrative, though she will continue to lead the Resistance and try to instill some wisdom in her surrogate son, Poe Dameron. Writer/director Rian Johnson has promised Fisher's performance will be cathartic for Leia fans, unsurprisingly confirming Episode VIII will be an emotional experience for all. Daniels, who has been alongside Fisher since the beginning of the series, got to witness it all firsthand.
While appearing at Fan Expo Canada 2017 (hat tip Space.ca), Daniels shared an anecdote of when he recorded ADR for Episode VIII and was able to see Fisher's scenes for the first time since filming:
“The magic of the movies is you will see her as you’ve never seen before. The other day when I was putting my voice back on [The Last Jedi], I had completely forgotten what we had shot. Suddenly in the footage that I’m watching, there she is, living forever. That’s movies for you.”
Though Fisher sadly is no longer with us, the legacy of what she created with Leia will undoubtedly live forever, continuing to inspire generations of viewers decades after her debut. The hope going into Last Jedi is that it sends Fisher off on a high note, something John Boyega has said is definitely in the cards. There will be an undercurrent of melancholy whenever the actress is on the big screen during Episode VIII, but the film also marks an opportunity to celebrate Fisher's time in the series. Fortunately, it doesn't sound like Leia will be a background supporting character in Star Wars 8. If fans are going to see Fisher in a way they've "never seen before," Johnson surely has something special up his sleeve.
Earlier this year, Kathleen Kennedy revealed Episode IX was originally going to be Leia-centric, before the tragedy forced Lucasfilm to retool the story. It will be interesting to see how the General's arc plays out in Last Jedi, considering nothing in the movie was changed after her death. Fans are desperate to see if there is a Skywalker twins reunion, but even if Luke and Leia do not cross paths again, viewers will be treated to one last powerhouse performance from the one-of-a-kind Fisher.
- Star Wars 8/Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017) release date: Dec 15, 2017
- Solo: A Star Wars Story (2018) release date: May 25, 2018
- Star Wars 9 / Star Wars: Episode IX (2019) release date: Dec 20, 2019