*Minor Spoiler Warning Regarding General Leia’s Fate. Turn back now if you don’t want ANY spoilers regarding Star Wars: The Last Jedi*
It’s been nearly a year since Carrie Fisher suffered a cardiac arrest on a flight back to Los Angeles from London which resulted in her untimely death four days later. Fisher’s penultimate film, Star Wars: The Last Jedi, premieres this Friday, and has been dedicated to her. A woman of many talents, she left a mark on this world and as the credits roll on Episode VIII we have to once again deal with knowing that she wouldn’t be entertaining the world with fresh material any longer.
Unlike the situation that the studio and filmmakers had to contend with when Paul Walker died during the production of Furious 7, Carrie Fisher had completed her scenes for Episode VIII before her death. However, because her character was also set to appear in Episode IX that left the Star Wars team to figure out whether to close Princess Leia’s story or not.
Minor spoiler after the photo….
Despite taking the easy way out and giving Princess Leia a heroic death, she surprisingly makes it til the very end of the film which may arguably be even more heartbreaking. One has to wonder how JJ Abrams is going to write out the Leader of the Rebellion considering that it’s unlikely that General Leia will abandon her people when they need a leader now more than ever. Although ‘Hope’ is the central theme in The Last Jedi, the filmmakers haven’t given fans much hope that the character will appear in Episode IX. Kathleen Kennedy of Lucasfilms had this to say on the matter;
“Sadly, Carrie will not be in nine,” said Kennedy. “But we will see a lot of Carrie in eight.”
It’s hard to imagine anyone making this decision lightly especially since Fisher’s family have given the studio permission and encouragement to use her likeness in future films;
“Both of us were like, ‘Yes, how do you take her out of it?’ And the answer is, you don’t,” said Todd Fisher.
With six months until production on Star Wars: Episode IX which is now being directed by JJ Abrams and not Colin Treverrow, there is plenty of time for the studio to change their mind. Technology is doing wonders for de-aging a character (see Ant-Man, GotG 2, Civil War), or creating amazing replicas of performers that have sadly passed on (see Paul Walker in Furious 7, or Tupac’s hologram performance). Come on Lucasfilm, if the family wants to see Carrie live on through these films then at least give her a proper goodbye in Episode IX.
Star Wars: The Last Jedi is out this Friday, December 15th, 2017.
Star Wars: Episode IX is set to continue on the Christmas release tradition with a release date of December 20th , 2019.