In just a few weeks, it’s the end of the Skywalker Saga when Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker comes to theaters. And while we sadly lost Carrie Fisher–who plays Leia Organa–in 2018, she will still be included in the final movie of this trilogy.
During a Star Wars press conference on December 4, director JJ Abrams discussed the decision to put Fisher into the movie and utilizing unused footage from Episode VII. “Like everyone here, who knew her, loved Carrie,” explained Abrams. “I knew her for a long time, not very well, but I knew her for a while, before The Force Awakens. Obviously, as we discussed, the idea of continuing this story without Leia wasn’t a possibility, and there was no way we were going to do a digital Leia. There was no way we were going to recast her. But we couldn’t do it without her and when we went back to look at the scenes that we hadn’t used in Force Awakens, and what we realized is we have an opportunity. And we can use that footage, use the lines she was saying, use the lighting…In any event, we had an opportunity to use the footage to create scenes that Leia would be in.'”
The post-production team had been editing the movie for a year, including the footage from Force Awakens. “She’s been very much alive, with us, in every scene, and if we had Carrie around, [would] we’d done things different here and there? Of course we would have,” continued Abrams. “But we had an opportunity to have Carrie in the movie. And working with all the actors, including Billie Lourd, her daughter, who’s in scenes with her, we were able to–I think–do something Carrie herself would be happy with. She’s great in the movie, of course. It’s emotional and moving to think of her and how sad we all are that she’s not sitting here with us today.”
In addition to the upcoming release of Episode IX, Disney+ is doing a new Star Wars-themed game show, which sounds quite a bit like Legends of the Hidden Temple in the Star Wars universe. However, when it comes to Star Wars and Disney+, most people are talking about Baby Yoda, who recently got some new merchandise that doesn’t look like bootlegs. Sadly, you won’t be able to get it until May of next year, so it won’t be the perfect Christmas gift for the Padawan in your life.
Star Wars Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker comes to theaters on December 20.