With Carrie Fisher's passing in late 2016, Star Wars fans were left wondering how Leia Organa's storyline would come to a close, while The Last Jedi left the future open for the character. Episode IX director JJ Abrams confirmed unused footage of the actress from The Force Awakens would be used for the new film, with Carrie's brother Todd confirming that unused footage from The Last Jedi would also be incorporated.
"I talked to Todd Fisher today about all of this and he has been talking with JJ Abrams about it," The Resistance Broadcast podcast confirmed. "I asked him, because the press release only said The Force Awakens so I asked about The Last Jedi, and they are also using unused footage from The Last Jedi. I asked him how many minutes of footage they had from it and he said 'I can't tell you that!'"
Lucasfilm was adamant from early on that they wouldn't re-cast the role nor would they use CGI to recreate Fisher's performance, leaving many audiences perplexed at how the character would be handled. One theory circled around a potentially large passage of time between the end of Last Jedi and the beginning of Episode IX where Leia could have potentially passed away off screen. This theory was supported by the novelization of The Last Jedi, which made multiple references to the ailments she suffered from her brief time surviving in space.
Ahead of the film officially heading into production, Lucasfilm confirmed how Leia would be depicted in the upcoming film.
"We desperately loved Carrie Fisher," Abrams shared. "Finding a truly satisfying conclusion to the Skywalker saga without her eluded us. We were never going to recast, or use a CG character. With the support and blessing from her daughter, Billie, we have found a way to honor Carrie's legacy and role as Leia in Episode IX by using unseen footage we shot together in Episode VII."
In addition to Fisher appearing in the new film, Mark Hamill is also set to return, despite Luke Skywalker's death in The Last Jedi. The new film will also see the return of Billy Dee Williams as Lando Calrissian, who was last seen in Return of the Jedi.
Episode IX is set to land in theaters in December 2019.
Do you think footage of Fisher from the previous two films is the best decision for portraying the character? Let us know in the comments below or hit up @TheWolfman on Twitter to talk all things Star Wars and horror!