Oscar Isaac says he’s happy General Leia Organa will appear in Star Wars: Episode IX. Following the death of Carrie Fisher in late 2016, some questioned if the character would be in the sequel trilogy finale. Lucasfilm quickly took CGI recreation (a la Grand Moff Tarkin in Rogue One) off the table, and recasting seemed like an impossibility nobody would want to tackle. With a time jump between The Last Jedi and Star Wars 9 largely expected, it would have been relatively easy to write Leia out and address her absence via dialogue.
Director J.J. Abrams toyed with that scenario, but felt it was necessary to include Leia in some way. That’s why the film will incorporate old footage of Fisher from the previous two entries in the trilogy, hopefully giving the character the sendoff she deserves. The development has pleased many, including Fisher’s co-star Isaac.
The actor spoke with Yahoo, and of course was asked about the next installment in the Star Wars franchise. When the topic of Leia came up, Isaac voiced his support for Abrams’ decision:
“I’m very happy about that. I think it’ll be a wonderful way to deal with this character that we all love so much.”
Isaac’s comments echo those of Mark Hamill and Fisher’s brother Todd, who are both excited Abrams found a way to keep Leia in the story. At the end of The Last Jedi, she was the only member of the original big three still alive, and was positioned to be a leader for the Resistance moving forward. Obviously, the plan to have the General be at the forefront changed over the course of the film’s development, but it’s nice to see she still has a role to play. It’s unknown just how much footage Abrams and his team has to work with, so it remains to be seen how big Leia’s part is. There may be some digital manipulation involved, but one would imagine Abrams is still somewhat limited with what he can do.
Of the main young heroes in the Star Wars sequels, Isaac’s Poe Dameron was the one closest to Leia, being her favorite pilot and a pupil of sorts (see: the lessons Poe learned in Last Jedi). They’ve had some memorable interactions in the past, and it would be great to see the two characters play off each other again – all thanks to the wonder of movie magic. Regardless of what happens with Leia in Episode IX, audiences around the globe will be thrilled to see Fisher on the big screen one final time.