George Lucas Planned For Leia To Develop Her Force Skills In Episodes 7-9

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Spoilers to follow…

Though Skywalker blood is potent stuff, Princess/General Leia never displayed much desire to train herself in the ways of the Force, largely limiting herself to a loose telepathic connection with her brother Luke. In fact, it’s taken until Star Wars: The Last Jedi to see her use the Force in a more physical manner when she wills herself into an airlock on the Resistance Cruiser after First Order fighters destroy the bridge.

Now, though, in a video interview with Rolling Stone, Mark Hamill has revealed that George Lucas’ original sketches for Episodes VII-IX featured Leia actively training herself to use the Force:

“This is always something that interested me because we can communicate telepathically and I tell her in one of the movies, I guess the third one, you have that power too. So I always wondered, and I don’t read the fanfiction, why she wouldn’t fully develop her Force sensibilities and I think that’s something George Lucas addressed in his original outline for 7, 8, 9.

I was talking to him last week, but they’re not following George’s ideas so we’ll have to wait and see on that one. But it seems like a waste of an innate talent that she should utilize in some way.”

Personally, I thought Leia’s usage of the Force to save her life was an excellent way to introduce it. After all, there’s no friction in space, so she’d need only the slightest nudge in the Force to propel herself forward. If she’d suddenly started tossing TIE fighters around it’d have been a little off-putting, but for me, it was a beautiful moment in a film full of them.

It’s sad that, due to Carrie Fisher’s tragic death, we won’t get to see what was planned for Leia in Episode IX. Indeed, given that she’s alive and well at the end of Star Wars: The Last Jedi, it’s going be a challenge for J.J. Abrams to write around her death, particularly as the studio has explained that they have “no plans” to digitally recreate her. Perhaps we’ll never fully know just how proficient a Force user Leia could have been, but one thing’s for sure – if she did ever become a Jedi, she’d be one of the most badass Jedi in the galaxy.

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