Carrie Fisher in her own words

Actress Carrie Fisher, who brought a rare combination of nerve, grit and hopefulness to her most indelible role as Princess Leia in the Star Wars movie franchise, died on Tuesday (Dec 27). She was 60.
Actress Carrie Fisher, who brought a rare combination of nerve, grit and hopefulness to her most indelible role as Princess Leia in the Star Wars movie franchise, died on Tuesday (Dec 27). She was 60.PHOTO: REUTERS

STRANGLED BY HER OWN BRA

In her book Wishful Drinking in 2008, she used an anecdote about Star Wars director George Lucas to dictate what she wanted written in her eventual obituary.

The story went like this: He instructed her that Princess Leia should not wear a bra under her long white dress because "there is no underwear in space".

He said the lack of gravity made the human body expand, but not the fabric of an undergarment, which meant a person could be squeezed to death by straps and waistbands.

She wrote: "Now I think that would make for a fantastic obit, so I tell my younger friends that no matter how I go, I want it reported that I drowned in moonlight, strangled by my own bra."

UNUSUAL SUPERPOWER

She had a daughter, Billie Lourd, in 1992 with talent agent Bryan Lourd, who later left her for a man. She told the Baltimore Sun in 2012: "I turn people gay. That's what I do. It is an unusual superpower."

EARLY SCEPTICISM TOWARDS FAME

She was the daughter of movie star Debbie Reynolds and pop singer Eddie Fisher, but their glamorous world came crashing down when her father had an affair with a family friend, actress Elizabeth Taylor, and later married her.

 
 
 

It was a major Hollywood scandal and helped hone Fisher's scepticism towards fame from an early age.

She wrote in Wishful Drinking: "You might say I'm a product of Hollywood inbreeding. When two celebrities mate, something like me is the result."

AFFAIR ON SET OF STAR WARS

In a recent memoir, The Princess Diarist, she admitted what many fans had long suspected: During the filming of the first Star Wars movie, she and Harrison Ford (who was married then) had an affair. She told People magazine last month: "It was Han and Leia during the week, and Carrie and Harrison during the weekend."

CANDID PERSONALITY A LASTING LEGACY

The Star Wars franchise has inspired armies of ardent fans. But Fisher's willingness to bring candour to even her most private struggles may be her most meaningful legacy.

"The great thing about it is when a 14-year-old comes up and says, 'I found out I was bipolar, and my mum told me that Princess Leia is bipolar as well,'" Fisher said, adding that "anyone who has this illness is heroic".

NYTIMES, WASHINGTON POST

A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on December 29, 2016, with the headline 'Carrie Fisher in her own words'. Print Edition | Subscribe