DEADLINE – J.J. Abrams explained to D23 attendees today, how the late Carrie Fisher will be included in the upcoming Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker.
“The character of Leia is really, in a way, the heart of this story. When we were talking about this story we realized we could not possibly tell the end of these nine films without Leia,” Abrams said during the gathering in Anaheim.
Fisher died in December 2016 at age 60, after suffering a heart attack on a flight from London to Los Angeles.
Abrams revealed he still had unused footage of the beloved actress from The Force Awakens, and decided to use it in the finale of the original Skywalker saga.
“We realized we could use [it] in a new way so Carrie, as Leia, gets to be in the film,” he said.
Abrams noted that he wasn’t originally intended to direct the final film, but was inspired by something Fisher wrote about the future Star Wars project in her book The Princess Diarist, before she passed away.
“She was almost sort of supernaturally witty and magical in a way,” Abrams said.
He went on to recall that Fisher penned: “‘And special thanks to J.J. Abrams for putting up with me twice.’ Now, I had never worked with her before The Force Awakens and I wasn’t supposed to do this movie, so it was a classic Carrie thing to sort of write something like that and it could only mean one thing for me. And I could not be more excited to have you see her in her final performance.”
At D23, Abrams was joined by Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy and nine stars from the film, including Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Anthony Daniels, Naomi Ackie, Keri Russell, Joonas Suotamo, Kelly Marie Tran and Billy Dee Williams, plus special appearances from R2-D2, BB-8 and the new droid D-O.
The movie’s official poster was also unveiled, and shows Rey and Kylo Ren facing off against the backdrop of an ominous electrical storm.
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker opens domestically on Dec. 20, 2019.
MENTAL FLOSS – Although both Mark Hamill and Harrison Ford have their own stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, their former Star Wars co-star, Carrie Fisher, did not get a chance to receive the honor before she passed away in 2016.
Now, Hamill is rallying for Fisher to get a posthumous star, and is asking fans via social media to help out.
On October 8, the Luke Skywalker actor responded to a fan on Twitter asking who to contact to get the late Leia Organa actress a star on the prestigious street.
Carrie WILL get her well-deserved Star on the Walk of Fame, it’s only a matter of when. The rule is a 5-year wait when awarded posthumously. A letter to the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce wouldn’t hurt, urging them to time it to the release of #EpIX⭐️#AlwaysWithUs pic.twitter.com/CVMX1csDwJ
— Mark Hamill (@HamillHimself) October 9, 2018
Fisher died on December 27, 2016 at the age of 60. Just days after her passing, a fan created their own Hollywood star for the actress, which read, “Carrie Fisher. May the Force be with you always. Hope.”
Hamill received his star this past March, and at the ceremony, he and Ford spoke of Fisher’s legacy and how much they missed her.
Many fans have replied to Hamill’s tweet, agreeing to write letters and expressing their shock that Fisher doesn’t have a star already.
We’ll be able to see Fisher again in Star Wars: Episode IX, as director J.J. Abrams has decided to include unused footage of her from The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi in the film. The next installment hits theaters December 20, 2019.
ESQUIRE – In her memoir released shortly before her death in late 2016, Carrie Fisher wrote, “I’m sorry it’s not Mark [Hamill] — it could have been. It should have been. It might’ve meant something. Maybe not much, but certainly more,” she said of her relationship with her Star Wars co-star. Of course, as we know, she didn’t have a relationship with Hamill because during the filming of the movies, she’d had an affair with Harrison Ford, who at the time was married and in his late 30s.
In a long-lost documentary about the making of Empire Strikes Back that was recently discovered and published on YouTube, Fisher, Hamill, and Ford discuss their on-screen love triangle. What’s funny, is given the context of what we know now about their personal lives, it’s hard not to detect the actors projecting a bit of themselves into the plot.
“She’s the princess after all and I’m an opportunist, but it develops into a love story as it were,” Ford says of the section of the film where Leia and Solo go off on their own in the Millennium Falcon.
But, Hamill thinks if he’d has his chance alone with the princess, he’d have ended up with her: “Give me three weeks with her in hyperspace and I might make a few points. I’m so burned about that,” Hamill says in the doc.
“Poor kid, it’s quite shocking, he’s of course fond of the princess himself,” Ford says.
Fisher had the most astute analysis of the Solo, Skywalker, Organa relationship.
“It starts out as a love triangle and then I’m thrown together with Han Solo,” Fisher says. “It ends up being one of those relationships like Tracy and Hepburn where we scream at each other for the first half of the film and then we end up liking each other.”
They’re all giggling through the interviews, of course, and it’s really very sweet. The rest of the doc focuses on how the crew created the special effects for the battle of Hoth, which took an insane amount of effort in the days before CGI.
ET CANADA – When the stars of two of science fiction’s biggest franchises join forces, anything is possible — even replacing Donald Trump’s star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame with a star honouring the late Carrie Fisher.
Mark Hamill first floated the idea after vandals trashed the president’s Walk of Fame star, leading to Hollywood City Council voting to remove the star.
Amidst the fracas, the “Star Wars” actor had a genius idea, suggesting Trump’s star be replaced with one paying tribute to “someone who really earned it.”
— Mark Hamill (@HamillHimself) August 6, 2018
A week later, the star of an entirely different sci-fi franchise chimed in.
Now, it’s official: Star Wars fans will have one final chance to say goodbye to Carrie Fisher, with Lucasfilm announcing that the actress, who died in December 2016, will appear in next year’s Star Wars: Episode IX.
In a statement, director J.J. Abrams sought to put concerns about potential CGI resurrections to rest, saying that the new movie will use “unseen footage we shot together in Episode VII” and assuring fans that “we were never going to recast, or use a CG character.” While this is, undoubtedly, comforting, it would also appear to offer particular clues about the role Fisher — or, more specifically, her character, Leia Organa — will play in the movie.
Firstly: Purely for practical purposes, Leia’s presence in the movie will be small. If nothing else, there can’t be that much extraneous, unseen footage from 2015’s Star Wars: The Force Awakens; she was barely in that movie, so unless large swaths of scenes were shot but never even hinted at by anyone involved in the production, there’s limited material to draw from in the first place, and surely not everything available will be used.
Considering the context of the footage, it also limits the potential use for Episode IX. Leia appeared in few scenes and locations in The Force Awakens. Leia was on Takodana, rescuing Han, Chewbacca, Rey and Finn, and then at the Resistance base on D’Qar, where she takes part in planning, and later monitoring, the attack on Starkiller Base. Aside from brief interludes with Han and, later, Rey, she’s very much in “harried leader” mode throughout the movie. Does this mean that this is the Leia we’ll see in Episode IX, even after losing her ex-husband, and then her brother, in the previous two movies?
STARWARS.COM – Star Wars: Episode IX will begin filming at London’s Pinewood Studios on August 1, 2018. J.J. Abrams returns to direct the final installment of the Skywalker saga. Abrams co-wrote the screenplay with Chris Terrio.
Returning cast members include Daisy Ridley, Adam Driver, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Lupita Nyong’o, Domhnall Gleeson, Kelly Marie Tran, Joonas Suotamo, and Billie Lourd. Joining the cast of Episode IX are Naomi Ackie, Richard E. Grant, and Keri Russell, who will be joined by veteran Star Wars actors Mark Hamill, Anthony Daniels, and Billy Dee Williams, who will reprise his role as Lando Calrissian.
The role of Leia Organa will once again be played by Carrie Fisher, using previously unreleased footage shot for Star Wars: The Force Awakens. “We desperately loved Carrie Fisher,” says Abrams. “Finding a truly satisfying conclusion to the Skywalker saga without her eluded us. We were never going to recast, or use a CG character. With the support and blessing from her daughter, Billie, we have found a way to honor Carrie’s legacy and role as Leia in Episode IX by using unseen footage we shot together in Episode VII.”
Composer John Williams, who has scored every chapter in the Star Wars saga since 1977’s A New Hope, will return to a galaxy far, far away with Episode IX.
Star Wars: Episode IX will be produced by Kathleen Kennedy, J.J. Abrams, and Michelle Rejwan, and executive produced by Callum Greene and Jason McGatlin. The crew includes Dan Mindel (Director of Photography), Rick Carter and Kevin Jenkins (Co-Production Designers), Michael Kaplan (Costume Designer), Neal Scanlan (Creature and Droid FX), Maryann Brandon and Stefan Grube (Editors), Roger Guyett (VFX Supervisor), Tommy Gormley (1st AD), and Victoria Mahoney (2nd Unit Director).
Release is scheduled for December 2019.
US WEEKLY – Sometimes, there’s no clear divide between good and evil. As Daisy Ridley’s Rey comes into her powers in Star Wars: The Last Jedi, she begins to question where her allegiance lies.
“From the start, Star Wars has always had the good guy confronting the extent to which the bad guy is a reflection of themselves,” writer-director Rian Johnson tells Us. “With Luke, he thinks Darth Vader is an evil guy who he has to kill. Then he realizes this person is apart of him.”
And Rey is dealing with an added struggle: She can’t find herself until she finds her family. Though she thought she had a glimmer of hope in Han Solo (Harrison Ford), “that was violently taken away,” says Johnson. “She’s still searching for her place in all this. She thinks figuring out who her parents are will help define her in this story.”
ET ONLINE – Carrie Fisher continues to be remembered by fans, friends, and family.
The late actress’ brother, Todd Fisher, helped honor her memory at the TCL Chinese Theatre in Los Angeles on Thursday, just hours before Star Wars: The Last Jedi was released in theaters.
Fisher received a plaque at the historic Hollywood institution that read “Dedicated to Carrie by the TCL Chinese Theatre, her Star Wars home since 1977. ‘We love you Carrie.'”
‘Dedicated to Carrie by the TCL Chinese Theatre, her Star Wars home since 1977 “We love you Carrie.”’#CarrieFisher #PrincessLeila #TCLChineseTheatres #ToddFisher #StarWars #TheLastJedi pic.twitter.com/xTQy9GwgLf
— TCL Chinese Theatres (@ChineseTheatres) December 14, 2017
EW – Things got hot and heavy between Mark Hamill and Carrie Fisher while the two were shooting the first Star Wars movie, which was released in 1977.
During an interview with The Guardian, the 66-year-old revealed that although he “knew from previous jobs” that getting romantically involved with a coworker was a bad idea, “Carrie and I were instantly attracted to each other.”
“I remember one time – I’m sure alcohol was involved – we were talking about kissing techniques. I said: ‘Well, I think I’m a fairly good kisser. I like to let the women come to me rather than be aggressive.’ And she said: ‘What do you mean?’ Well, next thing you know we’re making out like teenagers!” he said.
“We were all over each other!” he added, before seemingly revealing that there was a limit to how far their relationship went.
“The one thing that drew Carrie and me back from the precipice was we kind of became aware of what we were doing and just burst out laughing. Which was unfortunate for me because the rocket launch sequence had been initiated,” he continued.
NY TIMES – “Help me, Obi-Wan Kenobi. You’re my only hope.”
Even as a jittery, tiny projection, Princess Leia is a commanding presence. She’s one of the most powerful figures in her galaxy — and one of the most iconic characters in our galaxy. This is how she went from secret baby to General Organa. (Many Bothans died to bring us this information.)
- Padmé Amidala, the former queen and senator and the wife of Anakin Skywalker, dies in childbirth, but not before naming her twins Luke and Leia. (How could she die during childbirth in a galaxy that has mastered hyperspace travel? Who knows.) Padmé and Anakin’s daughter is adopted by Senator Bail Organa of Alderaan and his wife, Queen Breha. Luke is sent to the desert planet Tatooine.
- Sixteen years later, like many teenagers, Leia becomes curious about her parents. As detailed in the novel “Leia: Princess of Alderaan,” she inadvertently discovers that her father, her mother and their friend Mon Mothma are deeply involved in the budding rebellion against the Galactic Empire.
- Leia joins the group that will become the Rebel Alliance.