More than 40 years after first screening in theaters, new discoveries continue to be made about the original Star Wars movie. The latest indicates that Leia Organa may be more accomplished than most of her peers she shared the screen with.
Aside from being a princess and a general, Leia is also apparently a doctor with the Star Wars galaxy’s equivalent of a Ph.D. So, that’s Dr. Organa to you.
The discovery comes from a bit of commentary from George Lucas himself while discussing Star Wars: A New Hope, but hasn’t been widely known until pointed out by Dr. Becca Harrison, a professor from the University of Glasgow. Harrison discovered the quote in Dr. Carolyn Cocca’s book Superwomen: Gender, Power, and Representation.
Hang on wait what... Leia had a PhD in Star Wars? Christ can you imagine having everyone call you Princess when you were actually Dr Organa pic.twitter.com/HYertPJqWU— Dr Becca Harrison (@BeccaEHarrison) August 4, 2017
The quote credited to Lucas says Leia is:
young, nineteen, the same age as what Luke was supposed to be, but instead of being kind of an idealistic naïve farm boy from the far reaches of the netherlands, she’s like a very sophisticated, urbanized ruler, a Senator, so she’s a politician, she’s accomplished, she’s graduated, got her PhD at nineteen and she rules people and is in charge. [I needed an actress] who could be young and play with a lot of authority … and push these guys around.
While the first Star Wars movie revolved around a cliched “save the princess” plot for the first two acts, Carrie Fisher’s performance establishes Leia as a dominant force not to be trifled with. She rips a blaster from her rescuers hands and takes on the Stormtroopers herself.
It's possible that Lucas was using terms to establish Leia’s character and personality — and we’ve yet to see any canon references to her doctoral status — the fact that it comes straight from the mouth of the person who created the story, in no uncertain words, makes it pretty clear. And it’s not unbelievable to comprehend that Leia would be a doctor.
She is, in fact, one of the most cunning and accomplished characters in the entire saga. So you can now refer to her as Doctor Leia Organa, Princess of Alderaan, General of the Resistance.
Doctor Organa will next appear in Star Wars: The Last Jedi, due in theaters December 15.
Star Wars: The Last Jedi is the second film in the new Star Wars sequel trilogy that began with Star Wars: The Force Awakens in 2015. The film will deal with Luke training Rey to become a, and possibly the last, Jedi. Meanwhile, the Resistance, including Poe Dameron and First Order defector Finn, continues to fight against the First Order, led by General Hux, while Supreme Leader Snoke and his Dark Side follower Kylo Ren continue their mysterious plot.
Star Wars: The Last Jedi is written and directed by Rian Johnson and stars MarkHamill, Carrie Fisher, Adam Driver, Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, LupitaNyong'o, Domhnall Gleeson, Anthony Daniels, Gwendoline Christie, Andy Serkis,Benicio Del Toro, Laura Dern, and Kelly Marie Tran.