May the force always be with you, Carrie Fisher.
Carrie Fisher, the iconic actress who played Princess Leia in the Star Wars franchise, went into cardiac arrest on a United Airlines flight from London to Los Angeles, ultimately passing away four days later. The medical examiner’s report showed “sleep apnea and other undetermined factors” contributed to her death. There were also signs of “multiple drug intake” but the coroner said its significance on Fisher’s death was not determined. Fisher’s daughter, Billie Lourd, stated that her mother “battled drug addiction and mental illness her entire life” and that she “ultimately died of it.”
Since her passing, people have been sharing their favorite Carrie Fisher quotes and swapping crazy memories in her honor – and there’s a lot. Fisher was witty, outspoken, a mental health advocate and a champion of women’s rights and gender equality. It’s hard to narrow down the actresses’ best moments, but here are a few that Star Wars fans (or simply Carrie Fisher fans) could probably appreciate…
1. What so many people loved about Fisher was how much she resembled Princess Leia both on and off screen. Filming the first movie when she was only 19, Fisher already embodied the characteristics that made Princess Leia such a beloved and significant character, especially to women. She wasn’t afraid to speak her mind, especially when it came to double-standards between men and women.
2. Fisher was incredibly open about her struggle with mental illness. “I am mentally ill. I can say that,” confirmed Fisher. “I am not ashamed of that. I survived that, I’m still surviving it, but bring it on.” Fisher, who spoke publicly about her struggles with bipolar disorder, showed by example that mental illness should not be hidden or shameful, but a struggle many face and should feel comfortable talking about.
3. Many were in awe when one woman shared a story of how Fisher sought revenge on her behalf against a producer who sexually assaulted her. Hollywood, now ridden with sexual assault allegations, is trying to become a more comfortable space for women to talk and deal with sexual assault. Fisher, however, was taking matters into her own hands long before the #MeToo movement. Screenwriter Heather Robinson became friends with Fisher through A.O.L. message boards in the late 1990s. Robinson told a local radio station in Tucson how Fisher reacted after learning about Robinson’s terrible experience with an Oscar-winning producer in 2000. About two weeks later, Fisher had sent her a message letting her know she’d taken care of it.
4. John Boyega transformed into a star overnight with The Force Awakens and has shared in an interview that he picked up on a valuable lesson working alongside Princess Leia. “One thing I find from her is that she didn’t really live her life for other people, in the sense of other people’s opinions,” said Boyega. “Now I don’t care. I really don’t. It’s the best way to live, and Carrie Fisher is one of the people in my life that has influenced that.”
5. After Fisher passed, her beloved dog Gary Fisher has remained a friend among the Star Wars crew. Gary became instantly famous after accompanying his mom on promo appearances (including interviews!) for The Force Awakens. Gary acted as a therapy dog, helping Fisher with her bipolar disorder. Gary also has his own social media account and still posts pictures showing how much he misses his mom. The canine was brought to the premiere of The Last Jedi and even had a creature inspired by him in the film! ABC7 news reporter Veronica Miracle tweeted, “The late @carrieffisher’s dog Gary just watched #TheLastJedi! He sat on Fisher’s former assistant’s lap during the film. She said his ears perked up every time she was on screen.”
6. Here’s Fisher, aka Princess Leia, handing her co-star Mark Hamill a beer back in 1976. On top of everything else, she was obviously fun to work with.
A rare on-set moment when Carrie Fisher gives a beer to Mark Hamill in 1976. Not a bad reward for blowing up the Death Star a couple of hours earlier https://t.co/PjfrqJHyNh pic.twitter.com/cR49xFqXiL
— Massimo (@Rainmaker1973) December 19, 2017
7. Carrie Fisher’s daughter, Billie Lourd, paid tribute to her late mother at The Last Jedi premiere by wearing her hair in the iconic Princess Leia braided bun from the 1977 film Star Wars: A New Hope. Lourd appeared in her first-ever credited role in Star Wars: The Force Awakens as Lieutenant Connix. Although she only had a line or so in the film, her character in The Last Jedi is said to get more screen time.
Billie Lourd (2017) // Carrie Fisher as Princess Leia (1977) pic.twitter.com/BheKXqTWJZ
— i love you luke skywalker (@tolkienianjedi) December 11, 2017
8. Fisher was also a talented writer. In true Carrie Fisher fashion, the legendary actress openly shared intimate details of her life in her memoir The Princess Diarist. One detail that sparked a lot of interest was when Fisher, who was 19 during filming, revealed she had a three-month affair on location in London with her co-star Harrison Ford, who was 33 (and married). The 60-year-old actress told People magazine, “It was so intense. It was Han and Leia during the week, and Carrie and Harrison during the weekend.” Fisher confirmed that Ford knew their affair would be revealed in the memoir before it was published and approved. “I was so inexperienced, but I trusted something about him,” Fisher writes in her memoir.
9. This famous Carrie Fisher quote about what she wanted her obituary to read came to fruition after several publications posted the famous “Drowned in moonlight, strangled by her own bra” cause of death in Fisher’s obituary. The late actress shared she came to the conclusion of what she wanted her obituary to read after director George Lucas approached her during the filming of the first Star Wars film and told her she couldn’t wear a bra under her dress.
10. When a rumor came about that all the ‘slave Leia’ merchandise was going to be retired because some found the famous princess bikini offensive, Fisher had no problem addressing their concerns. Reports stated there was one father in particular who complained about the outfit after his daughter wanted to wear the costume. When asked about it by the Wall Street Journal, Fisher boldly stated: “I think it’s stupid.”
11. Fisher was such a talented writer that on top of penning several novels and plays, she was also a script doctor. Fisher’s role was to go in and help fix or improve movies and the star was good at it, becoming one of the top script doctors in Hollywood. Entertainment Weekly once described the late actress as “one of the most sought-after [script] doctors in town.” Fisher worked on films ranging from Hook to The Wedding Singer, from Sister Act to even the Star Wars prequels.
Carrie Fisher's handwritten notes fixing the dialog in Empire Strikes Back. pic.twitter.com/boO68TlXLD
— History In Pictures (@HistoryInPix) December 27, 2016
12. Hamill and Fisher had a great working relationship, calling the actress a “treasure” in an emotional tribute following her passing: “Carrie would want us to be happy, she wouldn’t want us to be consumed by grief. She was all about having fun every day.” When describing their working relationship on set, the actor has stated they were like real siblings, criticizing and fighting but still sharing a love and respect for each other at the same time. “The thing that she had about her, which no one else could match: She made you feel, when you were in her presence like you were her best friend,” said Hamill. “She was so laser-focused on you, and so engaging, that it was exhilarating to be around her.”
13. Fisher said in an interview that although she admitted in her memoir she struggled with her perception of Princess Leia and the Star Wars films, she ultimately is at peace with her character. From hairstyles to wardrobes, Fisher admits she wasn’t always a fan of the choices made on her character’s appearance and didn’t always understand the mass appeal. “The downside is the hair and some of the outfits,” said Fisher in a radio interview. “But I like Princess Leia. I like how she handles things. I like how she treats people. I – she tells the truth. She, you know, gets what she wants done. I don’t have a real problem with Princess Leia. I’ve sort of melded with her over time.”
14. “Because the princess is not a victim, she’s very strong, and it’s good because there aren’t a lot of strong women in film right now,” is how Carrie Fisher described the importance of her character Princess Leia back in 1978. Fisher admitted in an interview that it was a very male-dominated set. The crew was mainly men, and this made Fisher feel isolated. Although Fisher admitted feeling insecure because of the work environment, it didn’t stop the actress from standing up for herself.
15. Fisher never strayed from speaking the truth. When people were commenting that Fisher looked old in the later Star Wars films, the actress wasn’t afraid to acknowledge the judgment of “fans.” She wrote on Twitter,”Please stop debating about whether or not I aged well. Unfortunately, it hurts all three of my feelings.” She also referred to her body as her “brain bag” that hauls her around to places where there is something to “say or see.” Add it to the list of reasons why Fisher is one of a kind.
Youth&BeautyR/NOT ACCOMPLISHMENTS,theyre theTEMPORARY happy/BiProducts/of Time&/or DNA/Dont Hold yourBreath4either/ifUmust holdAir/takeGarys
— Carrie Fisher (@carrieffisher) December 30, 2015
16. Even in death, the legacy Fisher leaves behind will make an impact. “I know my Mom, she’d want her death to encourage people to be open about their struggles,” said Billie Lourd. “Seek help, fight for government funding for mental health programs. Shame and those social stigmas are the enemies of progress to solutions and ultimately a cure. Love you Momby.”
What's happening twitter asks? My daughter Billie Lourd from Scream Queens.She's MUCH more than my kid.Witty & pretty,I aspire 2 deserve her pic.twitter.com/oRietTuci3
— Carrie Fisher (@carrieffisher) October 15, 2016