The newly released Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker poster gives Carrie Fisher top billing for her posthumous performance as General Leia Organa. Fisher, whose breakout role as Princess Leia was reprised for The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi, tragically passed away in 2016 before the latter film's release. Filmmaker J.J. Abrams and the editors behind The Rise of Skywalker have restored the character for the final film, using archival footage from The Force Awakens to bring Fisher back to life on the big screen.
When Fisher died in December 2016, she was mourned around the world. That same month, a digitally recreated version of her younger self briefly appeared in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, a direct prequel to the original 1977 film that put Fisher on the map. Audiences had mixed feelings about Leia's appearance in Rogue One, which naturally took on a much more bittersweet tone than originally intended. A year later, The Last Jedi released with General Leia as a major character, depicted using the Force on-screen for the first time. The film was dedicated to Fisher, and some audiences wondered if it would be her final appearance in the franchise. It was announced that unused footage from the previous sequel trilogy films would restore the Princess for a proper farewell.
Now, the latest official Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker poster gives top billing to Fisher's posthumous performance. Her name appears just before that of co-star Mark Hamill, who is to reprise his role as Luke Skywalker, followed by trilogy leads Adam Driver, Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, and Oscar Isaac. Historically, the Star Wars billing order has listed Hamill above Fisher, due to contract stipulations. This prompted DC Comics editor Andy Khouri, who quote-tweeted the poster, to speculate, "Mark Hamill stood aside for Carrie Fisher to take the top spot for Star Wars 9."
On the same day as the poster's debut, the Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker final trailer was also released, in which Fisher's voice can be heard finishing the phrase, "The Force will be with you, always," after Hamill. October 21st, not coincidentally, was also the day Fisher was born in 1956. The shots of her as General Leia, shown in this and previous trailers, have been met with resounding approval by fans, many of whom have praised the special effects team tasked with altering her clothing and surroundings to suit the events of the new film.
Ticket sales for The Rise of Skywalker are now live, so fans can start preparing to see what is being billed as the final chapter of the nine-part Skywalker Saga. In addition to Fisher and the main cast, her former costars Anthony Daniels, Billy Dee Williams, and Ian McDiarmid will be reprising their roles as C-3PO, Lando Calrissian, and Emperor Palpatine respectively, while actors Domhnall Gleeson, Lupita Nyong'o, Kelly Marie Tran and Joonas Suotamo will also return alongside Star Wars newcomers Keri Russell, Naomi Ackie, and Richard E. Grant. The ultimate fate of Princess Leia is yet to be seen, but the comradery being shown to her memory three full years after her passing proves that Fisher will be with us, always.
Source: Star Wars
- Star Wars 9 / Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (2019) release date: Dec 20, 2019