After the unfortunate passing of Carrie Fisher at the end of 2016, it didn’t take long for Star Wars fans to start speculating about what it might mean for the future of their favourite movie franchise. According to Variety, Fisher had already finished filming Star Wars: Episode VIII, but she was also slated to appear in Episode IX as well. Since that movie won’t start shooting until 2018, they will obviously have to figure out how to handle her death by then. Based on certain technical achievements seen in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story, the obvious assumption has been that they may try to incorporate General Leia Organa using CG. However, Disney and Lucasfilm have recently issued a statement that makes their stance on that relatively clear:
“We don’t normally respond to fan or press speculation, but there is a rumor circulating that we would like to address. We want to assure our fans that Lucasfilm has no plans to digitally recreate Carrie Fisher’s performance as Princess or General Leia Organa.
Carrie Fisher was, is, and always will be a part of the Lucasfilm family. She was our princess, our general, and more importantly, our friend. We are still hurting from her loss. We cherish her memory and legacy as Princess Leia, and will always strive to honor everything she gave to Star Wars.”
Clearly they wanted to prevent the speculation from getting out of control and it does seem like the honourable thing to do. Of course, it also raises questions about why it is okay to digitally bring back Peter Cushing from the grave but not Carrie Fisher. Is it just a question of it being too soon? Over time, will people be okay with the idea (and if the technology continues to improve)? It also remains unclear if they are considering recasting the role, which may or may not be considered an even bigger outrage to fans. Do you think this is a classy move by Disney or are they limiting their options here?