Best adored for her iconic, style-defining role as Princess Leia in the original Star Wars, and set to feature in all three of the new Star Wars movies, Carrie Fisher has passed away today at only 60, after suffering cardiac arrest on a flight from London to LA, minutes before the plane was due to land on the 23rd of December.
Having made it through Christmas with her family close by, her daughter reported her passing through their publicist at 8:55am this morning. She leaves a family riveted with sadness, and several generations of fans heart-broken, not in the least because they were hooked into her reprisal of Princess Leia in the latest trilogy of the Star Wars films.
In 2015 an older, more venerable Leia returned to our screens in The Force Awakens, still bringing the fight, commanding the attention, and carrying a torch for Han Solo, despite the loss of their son to the dark side of the force (and if that’s a spoiler to you, get with it!)
For me personally, my first introduction to Star Wars was watching the opening scenes of The Return of the Jedi (Sorry, I know I did it backwards) as a kid, on a big screen in an open paddock at a summer festival on a backwater farm somewhere. I can pinpoint the moment clearly. Carrie Fisher rocking that iron bikini was somehow to me an image of girl-power and confidence defined, despite being caught in the position of Jabba the Hutt’s prize slave girl. There was something about watching her get her own back, choking the giant space slug with the chain he’d used to hold her, that had me completely hooked. I have been deeply a fan ever since. My moment of most excitement watching episode VII was without doubt seeing her alive and well.
I can’t help but wonder now what the future for episode’s VIII & IX will look like. If the Galatic Republic wasn’t already a dark place, it will certainly be a shade darker now, without her.
Fisher was on her way back home to family for Christmas after being on tour promoting her latest book, The Princess Dairist, in which she has famously confirmed that as a nineteen year old on set of the first Star Wars films, she did have an affair with co-star and on screen love interest, Harrison Ford (Han Solo – of course you know that already).
So whether you remember her most fondest as a brave space traveller sending secret messages to Old Ben Kenobi, as a reellion Princess , as a brave woman walking into a trap on Cloud City, as a bikini clad Amazonian-like slave, or as a girl letting her hair down celebrating victory over the death star, you will remember her, I am sure.
Carrie Fisher, we love you. Princess Leia, we admired you.
Rest in peace beautiful one.