Carrie Fisher, beloved Hollywood actress, author and activist, has been pronounced dead at the age of 60. Following a heart attack on a flight from London to L.A. on 23 December, Fisher was admitted to intensive care in an LA Hospital. Her family released a statement that she died on Tuesday morning.
Carrie Fisher was born on October 21, 1956, and into the Hollywood lifestyle as the daughter of actress Debbie Reynolds and singer Eddie Fisher. After her first role in the 1975 film Shampoo, Fisher was cast in the role of Princess (then General) Leia in Star Wars, just at the age of 19. Following her roles in Star Wars, The Empire Strikes Back, and Return of the Jedi, Fisher became a star. As she later revealed in a number of memoirs and interviews, this fame also came with parties fuelled by drugs and alcohol, that Fisher later looked on with an entertaining wit and total honesty. Her activism around her struggles with drugs and her diagnosis of bipolar disorder, and her openness in the discussion of these matters was noted by Harvard College earlier this year, in its Annual Outstanding Lifetime Achievement Award in Cultural Humanism.
While Fisher later returned to her iconic role as Leia in 2015’s The Force Awakens, she had a vast number of other appearances in film and television like When Harry Met Sally, Blues Brothers, Woody Allen’s Hannah and Her Sisters. Later, she became a highly-demanded script doctor, working on screenplays on a number of Hollywood productions (Lethal Weapon 3 and Sister Act being among those).
Carrie Fisher is survived by her daughter, mother, brother, two-half sisters, and her beloved French bulldog Gary, a therapy dog who often joined her in interviews and on the red carpet. Her influence and legacy in Hollywood was far-reaching and her breaking of conventions of gender roles in film and around the conversation of mental illness undeniably important; her cutting wit and intolerance for bullshit in public appearance always a joy to witness.