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The death of Carrie Fisher has thrown the Star Wars franchise for a loop. They're going to have to film the final part of their trilogy without one of the series' most important characters. However, they are apparently looking at a solution. A new report claims that Disney is currently negotiating with the estate of Carrie Fisher in order to get the rights to her likeness for future films. It appears like we may see General Leia in Star Wars: Episode IX after all.
UPDATE: Star Wars has released an official statement on this subject. Get it HERE.
(Original article below)
The statement comes via BBC Newsnight (via StarWarsNewsNet) who reported that the negotiations are already taking place. The report claims that the plan is to secure Carrie Fisher's likeness in order to bring Leia back via CGI for future films, in a similar fashion to the way they brought back Grand Moff Tarkin via a computer generated Peter Cushing.
While this report may be entirely accurate it seems to be taking place quite fast. Last week, it was reported that Lucasfilm chief Kathleen Kennedy would be meeting with Star Wars: Episode IX director Colin Trevorrow on January 10 in order to begin to discuss what to do about Carrie Fisher in the film. The word on the street was that Leia had a much-expanded role in the last film of the trilogy, which meant that significant script rewrites were possible. This report makes it sound like a decision has been made and negotiations are underway, which seems awfully fast.
While the negotiations may be happening, it seems a little too soon to be so sure about exactly what they mean. Carrie Fisher's likeness was used in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story so it's entirely possible that Disney is looking to secure her likeness for other projects entirely. In addition, it's highly likely that Star Wars will need to use a CGI Leia at some point in this process. While it might be used to create the character for Star Wars: Episode IX, it might also be needed as part of filming additional scenes in Star Wars: Episode VIII that will explain why she doesn't appear in the last part of the trilogy. In fact, this may be the most likely scenario, as it would explain why negotiations are happening so quickly.
There is another possibility, which is that Disney has no specific plans to bring back Leia, but they want to have the ability to do so if they ever find themselves in need of her. After what we saw in Rogue One: A Star Wars Story it would honestly be shocking if Disney isn't negotiating with all of the Star Wars stars to have the rights to use their likeness down the road. It would just be simpler to make the deals now just so they don't have to worry in the future.
Should Leia, one of the most important characters in Star Wars be kept around to finish the story or should they let Carrie Fisher go? Let us know what you think in the comments below.