After Carrie Fisher passed away in late December, we heard that she had completed her role in the eighth installment of the Star Wars series, which is officially known as Star Wars: The Last Jedi. But what about the forthcoming Star Wars: Episode IX? The official Star Wars site assured fans that “Lucasfilm has no plans to digitally re-create Carrie Fisher’s performance as Princess or General Leia Organa.”
Still, that left some questions unanswered. Would Star Wars: The Last Jedi be modified somehow to bring Leia Organa’s story to a conclusion in the movie? Or was that the plan all along?
Disney CEO Robert Iger now says (via Slashfilm): “We’ve had to deal with tragedy this past year because Carrie Fisher passed away tragically in December, and she appears throughout [Episode] VIII. What I can say about that is she is in VIII and we’re not changing VIII to deal with her passing. So her performance, which we’re really pleased with, remains as it was in VIII.”
Back in January 2016, shortly before production began on Star Wars: The Last Jedi, we learned that writer-director Rian Johnson also wrote the treatment for the ninth installment, which presumably outlined the major story points. Colin Trevorrow (Jurassic World) and his writing partner Derek Connolly are currently charged with actually writing the screenplay, but production is not expected to begin until late this year or early next year.
If the character was intended to survive into the ninth installment, though, could another actress conceivably play the role? Or might Leia exit the picture very early in the plot, possibly sooner than originally planned?
We don’t expect Lucasfilm to reveal any story points about the ninth installment — or even hint about them — until everyone has seen Star Wars: The Last Jedi, which is scheduled for release on December 15. That gives Trevorrow and Connolly plenty of time to work out any story points that still need to be adjusted with regard to Leia Organa.