11 Startling Facts about Carrie Fisher in Star Wars That You Didn’t Know

December 27, 2016 marked the time when the days of Carrie Fisher in Star Wars were coming to an end. Portraying Princess Leia Organa (and later General Organa) in the original and sequel trilogies, both the actor and her character have become almost inseparable. It turned out that the actor in real life was just as stubborn, daring, and resilient as the role she played. Apparently, many things about Fisher’s life also were as startling as those of Leia.

She Was Never Fond of the “Leia Buns”

The first thing that comes to mind when thinking about Princess Leia Organa is her side hair buns. Fisher always looked naturally great with the hairdo, but, she was never fond of the style. It took the hairstylist two hours to make the buns look impeccable. Although the result was always perfect, Fisher thought it was an overkill. The unforgettable and iconic “Leia Buns” hairstyle was only one among a handful of choices she despised while filming Star Wars. She never told George Lucas about any of it for there was always a possibility he would remove her from the cast. 

The “No Underwear in Space” Dispute

On the set while filming A New Hope, Leia was supposed to wear a white dress. When it was time to show Lucas the way she looked in the dress, the director told her to take off her bra. He had a simple yet creepy reason for it – he said there was no underwear in space. Lucas explained further how the weightlessness in space allowed the human body to undergo natural expansion due to zero gravity, so the lack of bra was good to help avoid getting strangled by the undergarment. Fisher never complained directly to Lucas about it.

The Case with Metal Bikini

There was also the “metal bikini” case in Return of the Jedi. The costume made her very uncomfortable, but she soldiered on. Pop culture later nicknamed it the “Slave Leia” costume, turning her image into a sex symbol. Later on, she encouraged Daisy Ridley (Rey) to speak her mind each time she felt uneasy about anything during the filming.

Carrie Fisher in Star Wars

At a Fat Farm

Prior to filming A New Hope, George Lucas told Fisher to lose weight. It was more than just a polite request. Lucas sent her to a weight-loss camp for it. Fisher later said that the director only wanted to hire about three-fourths of her, so she had to remove the part he didn’t need. 

Carrie Fisher in Star Wars

The Rise of Skywalker Features the Real Carrie Fisher

Episode IX: The Rise of Skywalker hit the screen in December 2019, or two years after Fisher’s passing. Because the filming began in 2018, some fans speculated that another actor portrayed General Leia. The actor only looked similar to Fisher thanks to the wonders of CGI. However, it was the real Carrie Fisher in the movie. Director J.J. Abrams made use of some unused footage already taken during the filming of two previous films, The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi.

Carrie Fisher in Star Wars

Fisher Once Thought Star Wars Would Be a Flop

All the challenges the crew and actors dealt with during the filming of A New Hope made Fisher somewhat pessimistic about it. She was not the only one to feel that way. Many other people in the production team never had any real confidence about the film. The skepticism was always there, but she never backed down from the role. In an HBO documentary, her brother Todd said Fisher thought Star Wars was cheesy. Things went the opposite direction, and Star Wars has become one of the biggest film franchises today.

Carrie Fisher in Star Wars

Cocaine on Star Wars Set

In 2008, Fisher released her autobiographical book ‘Wishful Drinking,” filled with many shocking revelations. In the book, she wrote about taking cocaine on the set of The Empire Strikes Back. She didn’t like coke that much to the point where she had to carry some on the set, but the drug was already there, and she took anything to get high at that point. According to John Belushi, who died of an overdose in 1982, Fisher was badly addicted to drugs.

Carrie Fisher in Star Wars

Standing on a Box

While filming Star Wars, Fisher found herself a bit too short for her romantic partner in the franchise, Harrison Ford (Han Solo). During many scenes where the couple had to stand side by side, Fisher had to stand on a box to appear perfectly compatible with him in the frame. Fisher was 5’1″, whereas Ford is 6’1″.

Carrie Fisher in Star Wars

Forgotten Relationship

Leia Organa and Han Solo formed a lasting relationship in the franchise. In real life, they too became romantically involved; Fisher was 19, while Ford was 33. She was a young girl, and he was already a married man and a father of two at that time. Of course, the relationship did not work out. In her memoir, The Princess Diarist, Fisher admitted having forgotten about the ill-fated relationship but only until she discovered the journals she had kept during the fling. She put it bluntly, saying it was Leia and Han on workdays but Carrie and Harrison on weekends. 

Carrie Fisher in Star Wars

She Almost Didn’t Get the Role

George Lucas wanted to have a beautiful girl to portray Leia Organa. In his mind, Jodie Foster was the only actor suitable for the role of a stubborn young girl with the beauty of a princess. When presented with the idea of Carrie Fisher as Leia, Lucas didn’t show much interest. Luckily for Fisher, scheduling conflict made Foster decline the offer.  

Carrie Fisher in Star Wars

A True Rebel

The same thing happened again in The Force Awakens. Fisher felt the pressure was on her to shed some pounds. Unlike in her younger years when she often chose to stay silent, this time Fisher showed some resistance. She spoke about her hatred toward a business where only appearance and weight were considered important. Fans didn’t want to see a slimmed-down Leia; instead, they yearned for the personality and characteristics of a leader of the Resistance.

We didnt know just how interesting Carrie Fisher was in her personal life until we researched this blog. Now we want to read her books! What do you think of Carrie Fisher? Did you like her acting in the Star Wars movies? Drop us a line. We’d love to hear from you.

Other things you might want to know about.

How did Carrie Fisher’s death effect Star Wars?

According to ign.com J.J. Abrams didn’t want to recast a person to play Leia and he wanted to avoid creating a CGI version of her. There was unused footage from The Force Awakens and this footage was used to create a narrative. They would write the script around the footage. He explained that it was “like a jigsaw puzzle and then having to make other pieces around it and paint a cohesive image from these separate pieces.” There was at times a digital body used to make sure it matched Fisher’s natural movements. The moment that Leia became one with The Force, her daughter Billie was the person helping her off. This was a real surprise because the writers and directors didn’t think Billie would want to do this. It became a very special moment. 

Was Carrie Fisher alive for Star Wars VIII?

According to kunskapsblad.com Carrie Fisher died on Dec. 27, 2016, a few months after finishing the work on The Last Jedi. The movie was released in theaters nearly a year later. Her final (digital) appearance in a Star Wars movie was in The Rise of Skywalker, which didn’t even have a script when she died. A stand in appeared on set with lines learned to help everything seamless. Scenes were written around the dialogue they had from past films. 

Fisher died at age 60 after suffering a heart attack on a flight traveling to Los Angeles. She died three days later in the hospital, one day before her mother’s death. Her mother was actress Debbie Reynolds. 

What did Billie Lourd do to help in the filming of The Rise of Skywalker?

According to esquire.com during the flashback scene, the body stand-in was Carrie Fisher’s daughter-Billie Lourd. Lourd already had a small part as Lt. Connix, but the filmmakers thought it would be especially fitting to have her stand in for her mother. Visual effects supervisor Patrick Tubach told Yahoo Entertainment: “Billie was playing her mother. It was a poignant thing, and something that nobody took lightly — that she was willing to stand in for her mom.” Many think this was giving the Star Wars princess a proper ending.