I know I wasn’t alone in mourning the late, great Carrie Fisher when she passed away late last year. Like many, I grew up watching the original Star Wars trilogy more times than I could count, and my fandom poured over into the novels and comics, many of which feature the likeness and personality set in stone by Fisher. Her passing definitely left a hole in many hearts, but it also brought into question General Leia’s future in the Star Wars franchise.
Following Fisher’s death, and the release of Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, there were rumors circulating that she would be brought back to life again via the magic of CG. We had just seen it in Rogue One, so why wouldn’t they use it going forward? Obviously, many found this to be in poor taste, LucasFilm included, who took to their website to flat-out deny the rumors. No, they would not be using CG going forward?
So did that mean they'd be cutting her out of Episode 8 or cutting down her role in The Last Jedi? Apparently not. Recently, we reported that the upcoming Star Wars: The Last Jedi would NOT be changed in light of Fisher’s passing, and now, in a new report from NY Daily News, it sounds like Fisher will even be present in Star Wars Episode 9.
According to the outlet, Fisher’s brother, Todd Fisher stated that Disney asked his and Fisher’s daughter, Billie Lourd, permission to “use recent footage” for the film. The outlet reiterated that no CG would be used to recreate Leia.
Todd Fisher stated the following:
“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.
“You don't mess with this legacy. It would be like rewriting the Bible. To me, Star Wars is the holy grail of storytelling and lore and you can't mess with it.”
Of course, we can’t hear this next course of action without coming away with at least a couple of questions. First, how much does Leia actually figure into the movie? How much is she going to be in Episode 9? Then, that leads into the next question: what footage are they using? Did they shoot more than they needed in The Last Jedi? Did they purposely shoot some Episode 9 scenes? Are they planning on using leftover footage from other films to jury-rig an ending? We just don’t know.
However, this statement should give audiences some reassurance that General Leia will not be meeting her end in The Last Jedi. We can all take a collective sigh of relief.
Star Wars: The Last Jedi hits theaters on December 15, 2017.