J.J. Abrams Explains Carrie Fisher’s Important Role In Star Wars: The Rise Of Skywalker

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Today just keeps on getting better for Star Wars fans. As part of their exclusive coverage of the film, Vanity Fair has been sharing a behind-the-scenes look at Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker, which is set to release later this year.

After complaints about The Last Jedi‘s plot and character arcs hit an all-time high, Lucasfilm decided to take the reigns from director Rian Johnson and hand them back to J.J. Abrams, who helmed The Force Awakens. As part of the Vanity Fair spread, he’s been providing unique insight and key plot details that fans can expect to see, and he also shed some light on Carrie Fisher’s role in The Rise of Skywalker. 

As detailed in a report by the magazine, Abrams’ newest film will mark the final appearance of General Leia Organa. Despite Fisher’s death in late 2016, she still served as a main character in The Last Jedi and will show up one final time in the franchise thanks in part to some impressive CGI and technical wizardry.

It seems she’ll return in The Rise of Skywalker thanks to the crew making use of deleted scenes from The Force Awakens. While some fans have taken issue with her planned appearance, Abrams assured Vanity Fair that her role would make sense thematically, while also noting the unused footage fits very well with the narrative in The Rise of Skywalker. 

“It’s hard to even talk about it without sounding like I’m being some kind of cosmic spiritual goofball. But it felt like we suddenly had found the impossible answer to the impossible question.”

“It was a bizarre kind of left side/right side of the brain sort of Venn diagram thing, of figuring out how to create the puzzle based on the pieces we had. There are moments in this movie where Carrie is there, and I really do feel there is an element of the uncanny, spiritual, you know, classic Carrie, that it would have happened this way, because somehow it worked. And I never thought it would.”

Needless to say, while we’re a bit surprised Disney and Lucasfilm opted to reuse old footage, we’re still optimistic that Leia will get the sendoff she so desperately deserves. In any case, with Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker hitting theaters on December 20th, we won’t have to wait long to see how things pan out.

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