For most of us youngins’, Carrie Fisher was best known for portraying the cinnamon-bun haired Princess Leia in the original three Star Wars films, as well as in 2015’s The Force Awakens. Fisher had a prolific Hollywood career post Star Wars however, both on and off screen. If you’re feeling blue about her passing (aren’t we all?), relive her life with these stellar works.
The film that started it all. Shampoo was one of Carrie Fisher’s first film credit, playing Lorna Karpf alongside actors such as Warren Beatty, Goldie Hawn and Julie Christie. The film all takes place within a 24-hour period in 1968 America, on the day that Richard Nixon was first elected President.
Fisher only has a few scenes in the movie, in which her character basically interrogates, then sleeps with her mother’s hairdresser. Ahhh the 70s.
The Blues Brothers (1980)
Based off the Saturday Night Live sketch, The Blues Brothers movie quickly adopted a cult following. The film featured an array of famous cameos including (of course) Carrie Fisher.
In the movie, Fisher plays Jake “Joilet” Blue’s angry, gun-toting, jilted ex-fiance. Almost a modern day Leia.
Postcards from the Edge (1987, 1990)
As well as acting, Fisher was also an outstanding writer. In 1987 she published the semi-autobiographical novel Postcards from the Edge, later adapting the book into a screenplay for the film of the same name (released 1990).
Both the novel and the film tell the story of an actress trying to recover after a drug overdose, reflecting on Fisher’s own life experiences. The book is told at first as a series of postcards (hence the title), and then as a series of diary entries.
Fisher wrote several other fiction and non-fiction works after Postcards from the Edge such as Surrender the Pink, The Best Awful There Is, Wishful Drinking (originally a stage show by Fisher), and The Princess Diarist which she was promoting when she suffered a heart attack last Friday.
The Original Star Wars Trilogy (1977, 1980, 1983)
Yes, this is her most well-known work. Yes, we’ve all seen the original three Star Wars movies (numerous times probably). But Carrie Fisher’s role as Princess Leia is iconic, and it’s iconic for a reason.
Fisher’s Princess Leia kicked major butt. She talked back to the enemy. She bossed the boys around. She wasn’t afraid of getting dirty. She knew how to use a weapon, and how to be diplomatic with the local ewoks. For many girls, she was the role-model who taught us princesses don’t have to be damsels in distress.
Watch every single film she was a Script Doctor for. Every. Single. One.
Like I previously mentioned, Carrie Fisher was as good a writer as she was an actress. So much so that after she wrote the screenplay for Postcards from the Edge, she was hired to work as a script doctor on Hook, by none other than Steven Spielberg himself.
For those unfamiliar with what a script doctor is, basically they’re writers hired to make finished scripts 100 times better. They make the characters more relatable, the jokes funnier, the plot more believable. Basically they are script writing wizards, magically turning “…okay” scripts into “OKAY!!” scripts.
Fisher worked on a number of scripts after Hook; you’ve probably watched these films and not even realised it was her who made them so good. She fixed up Sister Act, Lethal Weapon 3 and The Wedding Singer, as well as being rumoured to having worked on the three Star Wars prequel scripts.
In addition to be a creative powerhouse, Carrie Fisher was a proud advocate for mental health issues, and had a wicked, self-depreciative sense of humour. She will be sorely missed.