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Carrie Fisher "wanted to play Han Solo" when she first read the Star Wars script

We've seen all kinds of beautiful tributes to Carrie Fisher (opens in new tab) since she sadly passed away last year. There's no shortage of incredible anecdotes about the actress and writer and now, in a seldom seen archive interview in the new issue of SFX Magazine (opens in new tab), it turns out that she wanted another role when she first read for Star Wars. 

“I remember I read the script out loud with a friend of mine, Miguel Ferrer. It read fantastic," she said. "We both wanted to play the part of Han Solo because that was the best part. I couldn’t imagine how they were going to pull it off [but] I definitely wanted to be in it given that they had a chance at pulling it off.” Oh what a Star Wars that would have been. 

Fisher took on the role of Princess Leia when she was only 19 and while she played Leia with an attitude to match her co-stars, she was clearly insecure and constantly thought that she would be fired. “When I got the part they told me I had to lose 15 pounds so I thought I’d better lose that or they’ll fire me!" she revealed. "I kept thinking they would realise they’d made a mistake so I kept very quiet, which, if you know me is unbelievable!”

And those iconic buns, replicated in cosplays all over the world for forty years? Also because she didn't want to lose the job of a lifetime. “When [George Lucas] said, ‘We’re going to put that awful hairstyle on you,’ I grew to love it. ‘What do you think of this?’ they asked. ‘Do you like it?’ I said, ‘It’s fantastic!’ So that’s why that [hairstyle] exists. I did whatever they said as I kept thinking they’d realise what they’d done and fire me.” 

For more of the interview and a celebration of the forty years of Star Wars, check out the new issue of SFX Magazine on shelves now. Alternatively, you can subscribe to future issues here (opens in new tab)

Louise Blain is a journalist and broadcaster specialising in gaming, technology, and entertainment. She is the presenter of BBC Radio 3’s monthly Sound of Gaming show and has a weekly consumer tech slot on BBC Radio Scotland. She can also be found on BBC Radio 4, BBC Five Live, Netflix UK's YouTube Channel, and on The Evolution of Horror podcast. As well as her work on GamesRadar, Louise writes for NME, T3, and TechRadar. When she’s not working, you can probably find her watching horror movies or playing an Assassin’s Creed game and getting distracted by Photo Mode.