Billie Lourd writes beautiful essay paying tribute to Leia Organa and Carrie Fisher

Today in an essay for TIME, Billie Lourd wrote a very touching, beautiful, and emotional essay about her mother, Carrie Fisher, and Leia Organa.

It’s a great read, and I would encourage you to click the link above and do so. Lourd writes about how, growing up, she didn’t like Leia, as she just wanted Carrie Fisher to be her mom. But when she was in middle school she finally finished watching Star Wars, and then went to Comic Con with her mother. There, for the first time, she realized just how important Leia was to so many people. Lourd writes:

“I realized then that Leia is more than just a character. She’s a feeling. She is strength. She is grace. She is wit. She is femininity at its finest. She knows what she wants, and she gets it. She doesn’t need anyone to defend her, because she defends herself. And no one could have played her like my mother. Princess Leia is Carrie Fisher. Carrie Fisher is Princess Leia. The two go hand in hand.”

Lourd writes about how she didn’t want to pursue acting (and her parents didn’t want her to either), but she jumped at the chance to be in Star Wars with her mom. She loved it, and Carrie Fisher told her that, seeing how comfortable she was on set, maybe she should pursue acting. So she did. (And she also shares memories of what it was like being on-set with her mother)

They later filmed The Last Jedi together too, but in December 2016 Carrie Fisher tragically passed away. Billie Lourd met with J.J. Abrams and the two of them decided that, since Episode IX was supposed to be Leia’s movie, they would keep as much of that as possible. Abrams revealed that they would write the script around previously unused footage, and he offered Lourd a part in it. She writes that she knew it would be one of the most difficult things she would do – film a Star Wars movie without her mom – but she did it for Leia.

She concludes her essay by saying:

“I grew up with three parents: a mom, a dad and Princess Leia. Initially, Princess Leia was kind of like my stepmom. Now she’s my guardian angel. And I’m her keeper.”

Again, I encourage you to read it, as it’s a beautiful essay paying tribute to Carrie Fisher and Leia Organa as only Billie Lourd can.

It will be amazing to get to see Carrie Fisher on-screen one last time in a Star Wars film, and I can’t wait! I know it will be emotional, but I’m really hoping that J.J. Abrams and company are able to give her the focus and send off that such a legendary figure deserves. And I’m really excited that her real-life daughter will be on-screen with Carrie Fisher one last time.

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