(SPOILER ALERT) Following the untimely 2016 death of Carrie Fisher, the filmmakers behind Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker were adamant about giving her character, General Leia, a fitting send-off.
They were equally determined not to revive the actress digitally and planned to rely on deleted scenes of Fisher filmed for The Force Awakens. But it appears that, in the end, the truth was apparently somewhere in between.
In an interview with Yahoo Entertainment, ILM visual effects supervisor Patrick Tubach confirmed that Fisher’s daughter, Billie Lourd, stepped in for her mom in a scene in The Rise of Skywalker.
There’s a flashback scene set shortly after the events of Return of the Jedi that shows a digitally de-aged Mark Hamill as Luke Skywalker training his twin sister Leia in the ways of the Force. Some of the footage of young Leia was taken from Return of the Jedi, but when we see her face revealed, it’s Lourd playing her, with her face digitally replaced by a younger version of her mom’s.
“Billie was playing her mother,” Tubach explained. “It was a poignant thing, and something that nobody took lightly — that she was willing to stand in for her mom.”
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