Despite reports of a troubled production, Rogue One: A Star Wars Story exceeded expectations last December, though one talking point which divided fans and critics alike was the decision to add younger versions of Grand Moff Tarkin (Peter Cushing) and Princess Leia (Carrie Fisher) to the movie via CGI.
Cushing passed away quite some time ago, but before her sudden and tragic death last year, Fisher was shown the scene in which she featured by Rogue One: A Star Wars Story director Gareth Edwards and Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy. Now, in a recent interview, Edwards has talked more about that, revealing that the iconic actress didn’t realize that what she was seeing on screen was a digital double.
“We had about two weeks left, and Kathy went around her house and everyone was waiting to hear. [Kathy] said she showed it to her and [Carrie] thought it was footage. She didn’t realize it was CGI. She thought we had some footage. She didn’t remember the take and thought we had manipulated a take from the original film. But they told her it was all computer generated and she was really impressed. We were all just so pleased she approved it.”
For those who said that these digital recreations looked fake and not at all convincing, the fact Fisher didn’t even realize that she wasn’t actually watching one may just disprove that. However, it is worth noting that Leia looked considerably better in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story than Tarkin did – likely due to her smaller amount of screen time.
Given the response to these doubles in the movie and Fisher’s tragic death, chances are we probably won’t see the Star Wars franchise utilize many more of them in future releases. It was an interesting test for the technology, though, and knowing this makes Rogue One: A Star Wars Story‘s ending a bit more powerful.