Spoilers for Star Wars: Rise Of Skywalker ahead. Carrie Fisher’s daughter Billie Lourd plays Lieutenant Connix in Star Wars. But, in the Rise Of Skywalker, Lourd filled in for her late mom as Princess Leia, too. And fans probably didn’t realize it until now.
In the final chapter of the Skywalker saga, there is a flashback to a young Leia training with her brother Luke. In an interview with Yahoo Entertainment, ILM visual effects supervisor Patrick Tubach revealed that while young Luke was played by a CGI de-aged Mark Hamill, it’s Lourd who played young Leia in that scene.
“Billie was playing her mother,” Tubach said. “It was a poignant thing, and something that nobody took lightly — that she was willing to stand in for her mom.”
Following Fisher’s death in 2016, director J.J. Abrams decided to include Leia’s story into Rise Of Skywalker by using unused footage from The Force Awakens and The Last Jedi. For that flashback scene, Tubach replaced Lourd’s face with footage of Fisher from the original Star Wars trilogy.
In an essay for Time, Lourd talked about what it was like filming Star Wars without her mom. “I knew it would be one of the most painful, difficult things I would ever do, but I said yes for her — for my mom,” she wrote last year. “For Leia. For everyone Leia means so much to. For everyone Leia gives strength to.”