“I think I am Princess Leia and Leia is me,” Fisher once stated and she’s absolutely right. It’s impossible to think of one without the other. The Star Wars Celebration kicked off this week in Orlando to celebrate the franchise’s 40th Anniversary and her presence was sorely missed. But she was not forgotten.
At the end of the ‘40 Years of Star Wars Panel,’ Fisher received a tribute worthy of a princess and a general and there was probably not a dry eye in the house afterwards. George Lucas and Kathleen Kennedy presented tributes to Fisher.
"She played a part that was very smart, and she was having to hold her own against two big lugs, goofballs that were screwing everything up," Lucas said. "She was the boss. It was her war, and when I cast it, I said I want somebody young to play the part. I want somebody very young. When Carrie came in, she was that character. She was very strong, very smart, very funny, very bold, very tough, and there really wasn't much of a question. There are not very many people like her. They are one in a billion. For this particular part, it was absolutely perfect. … She wore a dress through the whole thing, but she was the toughest in the group."
Speaking of dresses, Fisher’s daughter, Billie Lourd, wore a white dress reminiscent of Princess Leia. She shared some memories of her mother before a video tribute aired.
The video tribute includes audition footage, memorable on-screen moments, behind the scenes footage and interviews with Fisher, along with the Star Wars cast and crew sharing anecdotes. David Bowie’s, “Rebel, Rebel,” was the perfect song choice to showcase both Carrie and Leia’s feistiness.
For me, what stood out the most was a segment where Oscar Isaac (Poe Dameron) talked about Fisher remembering all of her dialogue from the original trilogy. This then moved into a heart wrenching montage of the iconic “Help me, Obi-Wan Kenobi,” scene. It started with behind the scenes footage, then moved back and forth with various Fisher interviews and clips from the scene in A New Hope.
Just in case your heartstrings needed a little more tugging, the tribute concluded with John Williams conducting a live version of “Leia’s Theme.” Unfortunately, there were streaming issues during the tribute and there isn’t a video of “Leia’s Theme.”
Watch the moving video tribute below.