Star Wars: Episode IX may use footage of the late Carrie Fisher to conclude her role as General Leia Organa, according to her brother Todd Fisher. Since the tragic death of Fisher this past December, many fans have wondered how it might affect her role as General Leia Organa in the upcoming Star Wars films. It might seem like a callous way to react to her death, but Leia is as beloved to fans as Fisher was, and to think of the saga continuing on without her was almost too much to bear. After news that Fisher had finished filming a larger, more central role in Star Wars: Episode VIII - The Last Jedi, fans began to wonder what might await the beloved princess-turned-general in the new trilogy's final film.
One major worry several fans had was that Leia's role in The Last Jedi would be changed during reshoots, possibly to include the character's death as a way of explaining why she wouldn't appear in Episode IX. News that Leia's role remained unchanged were no doubt a relief to this worried sub-group.
Now, at the TCM Film Festival, Fisher's brother Todd Fisher has revealed that he and Fisher's daughter Billie Lourd have granted Lucasfilm the rights to use unused footage of Fisher from the prior two Star Wars films. CGI being used to re-create Leia was already debunked in the days following Fisher's death. Fisher's brother said in an interview with the New York Daily News:
“Both of us were like, ‘Yes, how do you take her out of it?’ And the answer is you don’t. She’s as much a part of it as anything and I think her presence now is even more powerful than it was, like Obi Wan — when the saber cuts him down he becomes more powerful. I feel like that’s what’s happened with Carrie. I think the legacy should continue… To me, Star Wars is the holy grail of storytelling and lore and you can’t mess with it.”
This news is especially heartening considering Leia supposedly has a big role to play in both The Last Jedi and Episode IX. The Force Awakens put Leia in another role of great power, as well as handing her a lot to work with emotionally. To erase that set-up in favor of unceremoniously writing Leia off, regardless of circumstance, would have been a betrayal to the legacy of the character. Leia has always mattered and been more than just a princess. It is only right that Lucasfilm honor the legacy of the first lady of Star Wars and give her the chance to complete her on-screen journey.
Lucasfilm's decision to keep Leia as part of the story, without relying on CGI to bring her back, is a smart and considerate decision. It shows the respect the studio clearly had for Fisher. By using unused footage to keep her as part of Episode IX, they are not compromising the narrative established in both previous films, and are allowing both the studio and the fans to have a sense of closure. Leia's story will live on, and like the Force, Fisher will always be with us.
Source: New York Daily News
- 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: The Rise of Skywalker (2019) release date: Dec 20, 2019