Carrie Fisher as General Leia Organa.
17 Apr – Last week, the "Star Wars" community was abuzz with the news that the late Carrie Fisher's character, Leia Organa, will appear in "Star Wars: Episode IX" since her brother, Todd Fisher, announced that Disney has his and Billie Lourd's permission to use footage of Leia for the film.
But alas, this news has since been proven to be just a rumour.
Lucasfilm President Kathleen Kennedy herself denied the report on Good Morning America, according to Coming Soon, claiming that Todd Fisher was "probably confused".
Kathleen Kennedy, Lucasfilm President (Photo source: Fortune).
In the interview, she said that Fisher passed away after they'd developed the film in thought but before they'd even written a script for "Episode IX".
They had to start over in January, but sadly, Fisher's character will not appear.
Kennedy's comments are consistent with the statement released earlier this year by Disney and Lucasfilm on the official Star Wars website.
"We want to assure our fans that Lucasfilm has no plans to digitally recreate Carrie Fisher's performance as Princess or General Leia Organa," it read.
And while we are saddened by the fact that Princess Leia will no longer grace our screens after the eighth film, we are excited to welcome a new female character, who was revealed during the screening of the "Star Wars: The Last Jedi" trailer at the Star Wars Celebration.
Kelly Marie Tran (second from left) joining the main cast of "Star Wars: The Last Jedi",
Mark Hamill (far left), John Boyega (second from right) and Daisy Ridley (far right)
(Photo source: Gerardo Mora/Getty Images).
At the Celebration, "Star Wars" fans got to know the actress Kelly Marie Tran, who plays Rose, a maintenance worker in the Resistance.
"Star Wars" director, Rian Johnson, said that Rose embodies the notion that even the most unlikely person can step up and become a hero.
The new character will play a major role and Johnson even suggested that she would be paired up with John Boyega's character, Finn, as he recovers from a lightsabre injury.
The "Star Wars" franchise has been criticised for its lack of major female characters.
But that has been put to rest, especially since the addition of Daisy Ridley's Rey as the new major protagonist of the "Skywalker Saga". And now, we have the recent addition of Rose.
Princess Leia's character will always be a fan favourite, among male and female fans alike. And while no new female character can ever replace her in our hearts, we are reassured that her legacy of strong female characters playing a lead role continues.
"Star Wars: Episode IX" is yet to have a release date announced, but "Star Wars: The Last Jedi" will hit theatres on 14 December 2017.
Cinema Online, 17 April 2017