LucasFilm has moved to dismiss widespread rumours concerning the future of Princess Leia’s character in the Star Wars universe following Carrie Fisher’s death, saying that CGI special effects will NOT be used to restore her in future movies.

The studio took an unusual but perhaps necessary step of confirming on Saturday (January 14th) that they will not use technology to restore her character.

Publishing a blog post via the site, the Disney-owned company acknowledged that “we don’t normally respond to fan or press speculation,” but were making an announcement to assure fans that there are “no plans to digitally recreate Carrie Fisher’s performance as Princess or General Leia Organa.”

Carrie FisherCarrie Fisher's likeness will not be digitally recreated for any future Star Wars project, LucasFilm has said

At the start of January, a little over a week after Fisher’s sudden death on December 27th from a heart she suffered on a flight from London to Los Angeles, the franchise’s producers announced they were holding a meeting to discuss this issue.

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Fisher memorably reprised her role as Leia in 2015’s Star Wars: The Force Awakens, and she is believed to have completed her scenes for the eighth, as yet untitled instalment that’s due out in cinemas in December this year.

However, for fans, LucasFilm’s new announcement has strongly indicated that Leia either no longer has, or never did have, any part to play in the ninth and presumably final instalment that has a tentative release in 2019.

Adding to that speculation (spoiler alert!) was the very fleeting appearance that a digitised 1977-era Fisher made in the recent Rogue One movie, and the much more significant role that a similarly digitised Peter Cushing, who played General Tarkin in the original Star Wars trilogy but who died in 1994, had.

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