With the death of Carrie Fisher, does it have any impact on the next Star Wars films, episodes VIII and IX? Was she slated to be on 8-9? Has principal photography started with her on camera?
She is in Episode VIII, filming is complete, and her scenes will not be changed.
General Leia Organa was played by Carrie Fisher, who was definitely going to be in The Last Jedi (Episode VIII):
“She’s in ‘VIII,’ and we’re not changing eight to deal with her passing,” Disney Chief Executive Bob Iger said during an on-stage conversation with his wife, Willow Bay, on Thursday at a conference hosted by USC’s Marshall and Annenberg schools. “Her performance, which we’ve been really pleased with, remains as it was.”
That is in accord with earlier information indicating that Fisher would be in The Last Jedi, e.g. this article, in which Fisher’s appearance was confirmed by Kathleen Kennedy, head of Lucasfilm:
Speaking to Bang Showbiz (via the Evening Standard) at Star Wars: The Force Awakens London premiere, Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy confirmed that pretty much everyone would be back for the next installment of the series. “There will be a handful of new cast members in Episode VIII but also all the cast members you see here tonight will be in it as well,” she said.
Cast members in attendance included Harrison Ford, Mark Hamill, Carrie Fisher, Peter Mayhew, Daisy Ridley, John Boyega, Oscar Isaac, Gwendoline Christie, Lupita Nyong’o, Max von Sydow, and Adam Driver, so make of that what you will. It’s worth keeping in mind that this exchange took place a day or so before the film actually hit theaters, so it’s not as if Kennedy were about to start spilling spoilers right there on the red carpet.
As further evidence, Oscar Isaac, who plays Poe Dameron in Episodes VII, VIII, and possibly IX, shared an set picture of Leia. It is possible, however, that it is from The Force Awakens.
Director Rian Johnson announced today on the official Star Wars Facebook and Twitter channels that Star Wars: Episode VIII has wrapped shooting. “Final slate of the final shot,” Johnson wrote of an accompanying short video. “VIII is officially wrapped. Thanks to the best cast and crew in the galaxy, and thanks to the fans for all the love and support through the whole process. Cannot wait to put it together and share it with you all!”
This would also tend to suggest that all Fisher’s scenes are filmed.
In addition, there will not be scenes added to The Last Jedi through the CGI technology used to resurrect Wilhuff Tarkin in Rogue One:
Iger and Bay also noted Fisher’s scenes in “The Last Jedi” wouldn’t be modified using hologram technology. Disney had used a digital re-creation of a late actor in a previous “Star Wars” film.
“We’re not doing that with Carrie,” Iger said, describing the upcoming film as “just as satisfying” as the last “Stars Wars.”
She is in IX
We know that Fisher had a planned role in Episode IX, since the Episode IX director discussed what he wanted to do with Luke and Leia’s characters:
Though he says he has yet to speak with original Star Wars stars Hamill and Carrie Fisher, Trevorrow wants their presence to be even greater in his film, revealing he can’t wait “to find new places that we can take those characters.”
“They are icons, but they’re also people that have suffered tremendous loss and challenge over the course of all these films,” he told us.
Initially, the filmrunners claimed that she would not be in the film. Kennedy claimed that at the time of Fisher's death, Episode IX did not even have a finished script. As such, contrary to comments made by certain other individuals (namely Todd Fisher), Carrie Fisher will not be in Episode IX.
INTERVIEWER: Todd Fisher has said that his sister, that Carrie will be a part of Episode IX. In what capacity—were you using preshot footage, or...?
KENNEDY: You know that was probably—he was probably—confused. Because we finished everything in VIII, and and Carrie is absolutely phenomenal in the movie, and we're so happy that we were able to complete shooting in the summer. Unfortunately, Carrie passed away. So, by the time we were...well underway with Episode IX, in our thoughts. We had not written the script yet. But we've regrouped, we started over again in January, so.... Sadly, Carrie will not be in IX.
This was in accordance with other official statements. According to the Guardian, Disney has said that they have not been trying to get the rights to Carrie Fisher’s image:
But in a statement the Walt Disney Company said: “Disney is not in conversations with the estate of Carrie Fisher at this time and any reports to the contrary are false.”
They also asserted that they will not use CGI to put Leia in future films:
We don’t normally respond to fan or press speculation, but there is a rumor circulating that we would like to address. We want to assure our fans that Lucasfilm has no plans to digitally recreate Carrie Fisher’s performance as Princess or General Leia Organa.
However, this was all quite false: Leia does appear in the film, and her role, while not as extensive as in previous films, is not minor, either.
Carrie Fisher Will Be In Episode IX
As of July 2018, Lucasfilm has announced that the late Carrie Fisher will be appearing in Star Wars: Episode IX in their cast list using unused footage from Episode VII: The Force Awakens:
Joining the cast of Episode IX are Naomi Ackie, Richard E. Grant, and Keri Russell, who will be joined by veteran Star Wars actors Mark Hamill, Anthony Daniels, and Billy Dee Williams, who will reprise his role as Lando Calrissian.
The role of Leia Organa will once again be played by Carrie Fisher, using previously unreleased footage shot for Star Wars: The Force Awakens. “We desperately loved Carrie Fisher,” says Abrams. “Finding a truly satisfying conclusion to the Skywalker saga without her eluded us. We were never going to recast, or use a CG character. With the support and blessing from her daughter, Billie, we have found a way to honor Carrie’s legacy and role as Leia in Episode IX by using unseen footage we shot together in Episode VII."
Principal photography on Episode VIII is already complete - it was announced on July 22nd, 2016. What role General Organa plays in the film is currently unknown.
We also do not know how the films will handle moving forward after the loss of Ms. Fisher. It's really far too early for any official statement or official reaction to the event.
I believe that she was supposed to appear. Here are some more details:
Filming for this movie ended long before Fisher’s death, with production concluding in July 2016. An official from Lucasfilm confirmed to TMZ on Tuesday that Fisher had no scenes left to film for Episode VIII.
As of July 27, 2018, Carrie Fisher will be in both Episode 8 and 9.
The role of Leia Organa will once again be played by Carrie Fisher, using previously unreleased footage shot for Star Wars: The Force Awakens. “We desperately loved Carrie Fisher,” says Abrams. “Finding a truly satisfying conclusion to the Skywalker saga without her eluded us. We were never going to recast, or use a CG character. With the support and blessing from her daughter, Billie, we have found a way to honor Carrie’s legacy and role as Leia in Episode IX by using unseen footage we shot together in Episode VII.”
Previously, the president of Lucasfilm had stated Carrie Fisher would not appear in Episode 9, but apparently they changed their mind.
Carrie Fisher won’t appear in “Star Wars: Episode IX,” after all.
Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy made the reveal during an interview with ABC News on Friday at the “Star Wars Celebration” in Orlando.
“Sadly, Carrie will not be in ‘Nine,'” Kennedy said. “But we’ll see a lot of her in ‘Eight,’ which is great.”
On April 14, 2017, Good Morning America tweeted a clip where this topic is discussed with Kathy Kennedy, president of Lucasfilms. The clip can be viewed here.