The unexpected death of actress Carrie Fisher last year necessitated her exit from the Star Wars saga, and while fans will have to wait until the release of The Last Jedi to see how the rebel princess says goodbye, the cast and creative team are promising that it's a fitting, emotional tribute to both the character and the actress. Now, we have a few more details about Leia's journey in the film.
Entertainment Weekly reports that the flick picks up with the Resistance leader dealing with the fallout of the events of The Force Awakens, in which her husband, Han Solo (Harrison Ford), is murdered by their son, Kylo Ren (Adam Driver).
"Her character to some degree or another has been defined by loss through this whole saga, starting with the loss of her home planet [Alderaan in 1977's A New Hope]," writer-director Rian Johnson explained to EW of Leia's journey throughout the series. "She's just taken hit after hit, and she's borne it, and she focuses on moving forward and the task at hand."
Leia will once again be in recovery mode when The Last Jedi starts, and finds some solace in her mentorship of Poe Dameron (Oscar Isaac), the young pilot who quickly becomes a key member of the Resistance. In an interview with EW, Isaac explained the two characters' intimate dynamic in the sequel:
"Poe is in some ways a surrogate son for Leia. But also I think she sees in him the potential for a truly great leader of the Resistance and beyond. ... Poe's arc is one of evolving from a heroic soldier to a seasoned leader, to see beyond the single-mindedness of winning the battle to the larger picture of the future of the galaxy. I think Leia knows she won't be around forever and she, with tough love, wants to push Poe to be more than the badass pilot, to temper his heroic impulses with wisdom and clarity."
That special relationship has taken on new meaning in the wake of Fisher's death, Johnson explained.
"There's no way that we could've known this would've been the last Star Wars movie she would be in, so it's not like we made the film thinking that we were bringing closure to the character," he told EW. "But watching the film, there's going to be a very emotional reaction to what she does in this movie."
We've already got our tissues handy.
For more details on Fisher's role in "Star Wars: The Last Jedi," check out the full story over at Entertainment Weekly. The flick hits theaters on Dec. 15.