American actress and writer Carrie Frances Fisher was born on October 21st, 1956 in Burbank, California, to actress Debbie Reynolds (known for starring in the classic musical comedy Singin’ in the Rain) and singer Eddie Fisher. Carrie began her acting career at the age of 16, as a debutante and singer in the Broadway musical Irene (1973,) in which her mother starred. Not wanting her time to be divided between school and work, Carrie dropped out of high school in 1973 and subsequently enrolled at London’s Central School of Speech and Drama. She had later planned to study the arts at Sarah Lawrence College, but she never graduated. Instead, she made her big screen debut in 1975’s comedy drama Shampoo. Before that, Carrie’s only experience with acting on screen had been in two television films in which her mother also starred.
In 1977, Carrie was cast as Princess Leia Organa in the first Star Wars film, later starring in two sequels and a Christmas Special. The film franchise was an instant and unexpected success, and it launched her and her costars into international fame. This became the role for which she is most well-known and for which she received four Saturn Award nominations. Following the staggering success of Star Wars, Carrie took on roles in The Blues Brothers (1980,) Garbo Talks (1984,) and Woody Allen’s Hannah and Her Sisters (1986.) She also starred in Ringo Star’s made-for-TV film, Ringo.
After the release of the Star Wars movies, Fisher published a semi-autobiographical novel in 1987 which became a best-seller, Postcards from the Edge (later adapted into a movie in 1990.) In 1989, she played a supporting role in romantic comedy When Harry Met Sally… and also in The ‘Burbs. Subsequent film appearances during the 1900s were in Drop Dead Fred (1991,) Hook (1991,) This Is My Life (1992,) and Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery (1997.) Carrie also authored two more books over the course of this decade (Surrender the Pink, in 1990, and Delusions of Grandma, in 1993,) as well as contributed as uncredited script writer to movies such as Lethal Weapon 3 and The Wedding Singer.
In 2000, Carrie had a small role in Scream 3 and appeared as herself in comedy-drama Lisa Picard Is Famous. This decade was also marked by a series of brief roles or cameos in several movies, like Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back (2001,) Charlie’s Angels: Full Throttle (2003,) Suffering Man’s Charity (2007,) Fanboys (2009,) and Maps to the Stars (2014.) In addition, Carrie also did a number of television shows, most notably: Sex and the City, Smallville, Family Guy, Jack & Bobby, Weeds, 30 Rock, Robot Chicken, The Big Bang Theory and Entourage.
Fisher reprised her role as General Leia in the new Star Wars trilogy, The Force Awakens, in 2015. She had already completed her work on the sequel, Star Wars: The Last Jedi (2017) and was set to have a larger role in Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker (2019,) when she untimely passed away on December 26th, 2016. The Last Jedi is dedicated to her memory and she can be seen in The Rise of Skywalker thanks to footage from previous films. Prior to her death, Carrie had released her last memoir, The Princess Diarist (2016,) and had starred alongside her mother in the documentary Bright Lights: Starring Carrie Fisher and Debbie Reynolds (2016.)