'Star Wars: The Last Jedi' Costume Designer on Why Leia's Look Changed from 'The Force Awakens'

For 40 years, Leia Organa has inspired countless fans to dress up as the sci-fi icon, thanks in [...]

For 40 years, Leia Organa has inspired countless fans to dress up as the sci-fi icon, thanks in due part to her memorable fashion choices. In The Last Jedi, Leia wore much more regal attire than previously seen, with costume designer Michael Kaplan saying this was a distinct choice for the character on behalf of writer/director Rian Johnson.

"For The Last Jedi, the director Rian Johnson wanted her to look more regal," Kaplan told The New York Times. "I got a really lovely letter from him, saying, 'You made her look so beautiful in these costumes for her final film.' It meant a lot."

Johnson apparently wasn't the only one happy with the direction the character's wardrobe took, with actress Carrie Fisher seemingly happy to shed the more militaristic look she sported in the previous film.

"She commented on everything. But whenever she was talking, there was laughter," Kaplan shared. "She referred to her costume in Episode 7 as her 'Sunoco gas station attendant' costume."

With Fisher's sudden passing late last year, it's unknown how her character's absence will be addressed in Episode IX. Last October, Mark Hamill revealed to an audience at New York Comic-Con that Fisher was originally intended to be the focus of the next film.

"You're going to really love her in [The Last Jedi]," Hamill told the crowd. "I know they're going to try and find a way to close her story in [Episode] IX that gives her the respect she deserves, because (Han Solo) was more prominent in [The Force Awakens], Luke's a little more prominent in [The Last Jedi], and certainly Leia was meant to be more prominent in IX."

Johnson explained well ahead of his film's release that Fisher had wrapped filming prior to her passing and that the film wouldn't alter Leia's story, yet Episode IX is sure to be drastically different than some of the earliest incarnations of the story.

Given how little we know about the next film, it's possible that there could be a large gap in time between the events of the two films, with the narrative potentially addressing her passing or merely here absence.

Fans will find out when Episode IX hits theaters on December 20, 2019.

The Last Jedi is in theaters now.

[H/T The New York Times]