Director Rian Johnson allowed Carrie Fisher to improvise her lines in Star Wars: The Last Jedi.
The late actress, who died in December last year (16), left a lasting impression on the sci-fi saga and added a few special touches to what would be her final appearance as Princess/General Leia.
According to Rian, one of the biggest moments Carrie wrote was her iconic character’s long-anticipated reunion with her brother Luke Skywalker, played by Mark Hamill.
“I know what you’re going to say,” Leia tells Luke. “I changed my hair.”
“That was her,” the director confirmed to People. “That was a Carrie Fisher line. Of course, it was.”
Rian confessed that “every single part of her performance” was embedded with Carrie’s ideas, which she gave him while they were filming.
“I would sit down with her and she would just give me… After an hour, I would have filled up pages and pages writing down the notes and one-liners that she would pitch,” he said. “And so, we tried to work them in whenever we could.”
Carrie also tackled a scene with Admiral Amilyn Holdo, played by Laura Dern, in which Leia says, “You go, I’ve said it enough,” in reference to the much-loved saying, “May the Force be with you.”
“In the scene with Holdo, that was Carrie,” Rian added.
He also explained how Carrie had helped him to add more humor to The Last Jedi, which was something he was keen to return to.
“I think that as Star Wars fans, especially as adults, you can get into a mindset of wanting it to just be the heavy opera,” Rian said. “And I don’t know, I was 10 years old when Return of the Jedi came out.
That was the perfect age for it. And the humor and the slight goofiness of it also, and kind of the slight free-wheeling feel of it, and how it’s unafraid to have fun, that to me is essential.”