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Carrie Fisher on Women Jedi and Her Desire for Leia to Have a Purple Lightsaber

There are few things that we can rely on in this cold and dark world, but Carrie Fisher’s charm is one of them. She visited The Late Show to discuss her new memoir, The Princess Diarist, featuring the diary entries that she wrote while filming Star Wars–and, yes, those diary entries do confirm the longstanding rumor that she and Harrison Ford totally hooked up back then. But they also provide a lens into the rest of her experiences, as written by her, while movie history unfolded around her.

With her support dog Gary sitting right beside her to provide hand-licking comfort, Fisher face-palmed as she recalled the fact that her new book confirmed the affair with Ford. “I found the diaries, and decided to publish them, and it was a mistake,” she says, with a bashful smile. Colbert is surprised: “A mistake? Really?” She walks it back slightly: “No, but it is too big of a story, kind of, that I can’t handle.”

Colbert quips that perhaps Harrison Ford is the one who can’t handle it, and Fisher continues to smile and face-palm over the idea of that, too. But, ultimately, she doesn’t seem to regret spilling the beans: “It was forty years ago,” after all! Then she and Stephen tell a lot of fun jokes about the types of “sexual details” that might appear in the book… including something about an ion cannon, apparently.

In the second half of the interview, Fisher reiterates some problems with which we’re all familiar: the double standards for women in the world of Star Wars. She recounts the fact that she was pressured to lose weight to play the role of Princess Leia. Then, there’s the way that her character got framed in the narrative itself. For example, Leia’s home planet got destroyed, yet she still was expected to console Luke. No one consoles Leia, and as Carrie Fisher points out, Leia lost everything in that explosion. Including her record collection!

And, of course, there’s the age-old question: why doesn’t Princess Leia get to carry a lightsaber? In this follow-up video, Fisher explains that if Leia had a lightsaber, it would be purple, just like Mace Windu’s:

(image via YouTube screencap)

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Maddy Myers, journalist and arts critic, has written for the Boston Phoenix, Paste Magazine, MIT Technology Review, and tons more. She is a host on a videogame podcast called Isometric (relay.fm/isometric), and she plays the keytar in a band called the Robot Knights (robotknights.com).