Carrie Fisher appeared in films such as The Blues Brothers and When Harry Met Sally. Carrie Fisher was the bestselling author who penned no-holds-barred semi-autobiographical novels such as Postcards from the Edge and brutal memoirs The Princess Diarist (the one where she talked about her affair with ‘Han Solo’ Harrison Ford). She acted in TV shows such as 30 Rock. She put up plays, which she also wrote and her acrebic wit was at play as she took to Twitter.
But, Carrie Fisher, for her millions of fans, will always be Princess Leia Organa. The damsel who could handle her own distress. The indomitable one with hair bagels and metal bikini. The princess who faced Darth Vader with a sneer and no fear.
WATCH VIDEO | Carrie Fisher, Princess Leia Of ‘Star Wars’, Dies At 60
The daughter of Hollywood stars Eddie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds, and a survivor of early fame, drug addiction and bipolar disorder, she wrote with unsentimental wit and understanding about her private struggles and about an industry she was raised in but stood apart from. Fisher died Tuesday at 60, four days after falling ill aboard an airline flight. Media reports said the actress had suffered a heart attack. Here are the quotable quotes from the actress who loved her work and hated it. And an author who knew she will first and foremost be considered an actress.
1. “I do believe you’re only as sick as your secrets. If that’s true, I’m just really healthy,” she said in a confessional 2009 interview.
2. Asked by NPR recently why she wrote about her fling with Ford, who was 15 years older and married, she joked that she could hold back no longer because he had refused to die: “I kept calling and saying, `When are you going to die because I want to tell the story?”’
3. But she was toughest on herself and unafraid to turn trauma into humor. She became the most knowable of celebrities, with a great and generous gift for bringing us into her unusual life. “One of the therapists came in to admit me and asked how long I had been a drug addict,” she wrote in Postcards,” her autobiographical novel that became a movie of the same name. “I said I didn’t think I was a drug addict because I didn’t take any one drug. `Then you’re a drugs addict,’ she said. She asked if I had deliberately tried to kill myself. I was insulted by the question. I guess when you find yourself having overdosed, it’s a good indicator that your life isn’t working.”
4. Director George Lucas, who considered Jodie Foster, Amy Irving and dozens of others for the role, said he had been looking for an actress who could “hold her own” against her male co-stars. In her 2008 memoir “Wishful Drinking,” she recounted how Lucas told her on the first day of shooting that she couldn’t wear a bra under her costume because “there’s no underwear in space.” Lucas, she said, later explained that a woman could be strangled by her bra in the weightlessness of space. Fisher wisecracked in her book that that would make for a “fantastic obit,” adding: “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.”
5. Fisher would make a lot of wisecracks about the role that made her pop-culture royalty and led Debbie Reynolds to note ruefully she was now regarded as the mother of Princess Leia. Fisher disliked her hairstyle, disparaged her hybrid British-American accent in the films and was appalled by some of the “Star Wars” merchandise. Given the chance, she would have preferred to play Han Solo. “When I first read the script I thought that’s the part to be, always wry and sardonic,” she told a gathering in England in 2015. “He’s always that. I feel like a lot of the time Leia’s either worried or pissed or, thank God, sort of snarky. But I’m much more worried and pissed than Han Solo ever was, and those aren’t fun things to play.”
6. Her drug problems pre-dated “Star Wars.” She recalled smoking pot at age 13 (She would later learn that there is a kind of marijuana called “Princess Leia.”) and dropped acid at 21. She used so much cocaine that even world-class partyer John Belushi, who died of a drug overdose at 33, warned her to stop.
7. In her 20s, she was diagnosed as bipolar and treated with electroshock therapy and medication, which she wrote about in the memoir “Shockaholic.” She said, “People relate to aspects of my stories, and that’s nice for me because then I’m not all alone with it.” She also wisecracked, “I don’t have a problem with drugs so much as I have a problem with sobriety.” At another point, she said: “I’m a product of Hollywood inbreeding. When two celebrities mate, something like me is the result.”
8. Accepting her place in history, she said, “I am Princess Leia, no matter what. If I were trying to get a good table, I wouldn’t say I wrote Postcards [From the Edge, her best-selling novel]. Or, if I’m trying to get someone to take my check and I don’t have ID, I wouldn’t say: “Have you seen [When] Harry Met Sally?” Princess Leia will be on my tombstone.”
9. On finding happiness: “Sometimes you can only find Heaven by slowly backing away from Hell.”
10. Summing up the showbiz legacy she expected to leave behind in her 2011 memoir “Shockaholic,” Fisher wrote in self-deprecating style: “What you’ll have of me after I journey to that great Death Star in the sky is an extremely accomplished daughter, a few books, and a picture of a stern-looking girl wearing some kind of metal bikini lounging on a giant drooling squid, behind a newscaster informing you of the passing of Princess Leia after a long battle with her head.”
(With inputs from Wires)