A week ago I attended the Star Wars: The Last Jedi press conference, and I was utterly starstruck by the cast as they walked onto the stage and gave us some great insight on what they brought to the Star Wars franchise. After we heard from everyone on stage, there was one final question that was asked, and it nearly brought me to tears.
To close things off, the moderator of the conference asked the women of the panel how Carrie Fisher and Princess Leia impacted them as young girls.
This is what Gwendoline Christie ( Captain Phasma ) had to say:
“Well, she was very significant because I was first shown A New Hope when I was six, and I remember thinking, wow, that character’s really different. I watched TV and film obsessively from such a young age, but it stayed with me throughout my formative years. She’s really interesting, she’s really smart, she’s really funny, she’s courageous, she’s bold, she doesn’t care what people think, and she isn’t prepared to be told what to do. And she doesn’t look the same as a sort of homogenized presentation of a woman that we had been used to seeing. So that was really instrumental to me as someone that didn’t feel like they fitted that homogenized view of what a woman was supposed to be. There was inspiration there, that you could be an individual and celebrateyourself and be successful without giving yourself over, without necessarily making some terrible, huge compromise. So it was a big inspiration for me. And you know, to play a character as well from what we’ve seen in The Force Awakens, I was very excited when I was shown just the basic element of the costume. And here we were seeing character whereby a woman wasn’t – her femininity was not delineated in terms of the shape of her body, in terms of her physical attractiveness. Those elements, that weird random group of elements which were born with in some odd lottery and then we’re judged on in society. And I was just delighted to be able to have that opportunity.”
Laura Dern, who plays Admiral Holdo in Star Wars: The Last Jedi was asked what her thoughts were about the impact of Carrie Fisher, she added by saying:
“Well, endless thoughts and also, a profound impact that she made on me as a girl, we always had with Carrie, not just Leia, her wisdom, and you know, people speak about people who are brave or fearless, but beyond that. I’ve known a few people that would hold those descriptions, but not without shame, and that’s what moved me the most about the icon she gave us. She gave us individually and personally which is to Carrie, who she was so directly and to be without shame, and to share her story, and to expect nothing less from any of us. And the privilege of watching how Rian has so beautifully captured all of that and her grace in this amazing. I think she found an equal irreverent subservience and they had this dance that gives us this performance that I was just so moved by.”
When Daisy Ridley ( who plays Rey ) was asked about her thoughts about Carrie Fisher’s impact, Daisy said:
” I don’t think I can really follow that, except to just say Carrie’s daughter Billie shares all of these qualities. She’s smart and funny and shameless and wonderful. I think Carrie bringing up a daughter with Brian, who has all of those qualities and then some, in this world, just her being herself, speaks volumes to what she did as herself in the spotlight and also her as Leia.”
Kelly Marie Tran ( Rose ) finished up the topic by saying:
“I think that something about Carrie that I really look up to is, and something I didn’t realize until recently, was just how much courage it takes to truly be yourself when you’re on a public platform. And when a lot of people will be looking at you, she was so unapologetic and so openly herself, and that is something that I am really trying to do, and it’s hard. And just like Daisy said, like Laura said, as Gwendoline said, I think that she will always be an icon as Leia but also as Carrie. What an example, you know? And I am so fortunate to have met her, and I think that she will really live on forever.”
Well, that wraps things up, guys. We will have a review post up very soon to give you our thoughts on the film so stay tuned on the site. Star Wars: The Last Jedi arrives in theaters December 15th so buy your tickets now before they’re allgone!
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