Carrie Fisher, the actress immortalized in our memories as Princess Leia Organa for the original “Star Wars” trilogy, has died at the age of 60, according to multiple reports.
She suffered a cardiac episode during a flight from London to Los Angeles on Friday and was at the UCLA Medical Center in treatment over the weekend.
“She was loved by the world and she will be missed profoundly,” Fisher’s daughter Billie Lourd said in a statement. “Our entire family thanks you for your thoughts and prayers.”
Fisher, the daughter of actors Eddie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds, has a had a long and full career but is best known as the intrepid princess-warrior who helped a band of rebels defeat Darth Vadar and his Empire.
Fisher was 19 when she starred in the first Star Wars film in 1977. Last year, she reprised her role (this time as General Leia) in “Star Wars: The Force Awakens,” unknowingly giving fans one last opportunity to connect with the character.
Here are several tributes to Fisher from fans and friends who she touched.
While the opening crawl and massive starship is credited with blowing away audiences who see Star Wars for the first time, it’s the appearance of a young woman who steals the show for me. She’s fearless, standing toe to toe with the imposing Darth Vader, misdirects his forces under extreme duress, and helps spell the downfall of the Empire with the destruction of the Death Star. Princess Leia joined the pantheon of incredible heroines in that film, and her portrayal by Carrie Fisher is one of the greatest characters ever put to film.
I'm deeply saddened to learn of the death of Carrie Fisher. I will miss our banterings. A wonderful talent & light has been extinguished.
— William Shatner (@WilliamShatner) December 27, 2016
Together with her Star Wars co-stars, she helped define what a blockbuster movie was, and helped to refine what sci-fi could be in cinema. Princess Leia was also seen as a championing character for gender equality in sci-fi, moving away from the damsel in distress trope or more passive roles. Instead, she was a key component in the war against the Empire and took charge of multiple situations, becoming a leading figure in the franchise.
I'm deeply saddened at the news of Carrie's passing. She was a dear friend, whom I greatly respected and admired. The force is dark today!
— Billy Dee Williams (@realbdw) December 27, 2016
Carrie holds such special place in the hearts of everyone at Lucasfilm it is difficult to think of a world without her. She was Princess Leia to the world but a very special friend to all of us. She had an indomitable spirit, incredible wit, and a loving heart. Carrie also defined the female hero of our age over a generation ago. Her groundbreaking role as Princess Leia served as an inspiration of power and confidence for young girls everywhere. We will miss her dearly.
— Margaret Cho (@margaretcho) December 27, 2016
As Princess Leia, Carrie Fisher arguably played the most famous, most visible, most important female role in cinematic history. How remarkable it is, then, that the actress’s own intelligent, candid, crusading, and at times riotously off-message eccentric character overshadowed it.
It’s a powerful and feminist message and the greatest testament to authenticity we might have from a Hollywood fixture, be it Princess Leia kicking ass to save the galaxy or the accomplished writer, actress, and activist who played her, we might have.
It was an a dream to work with Carrie Fisher just two weeks ago. She was hilarious with an acerbic, sexy sense of humour & was well able… pic.twitter.com/j7SJXGZy0Z
— Aisling Bea (@WeeMissBea) December 27, 2016