Disney(LOS ANGELES) — The holidays are here for Star Wars fans: The Last Jedi, the latest film in the epic series, is in theaters now.
All eyes will be on the late Carrie Fisher in her final Star Wars performance as Princess-turned-General Leia. Fisher died last December shortly after completing work on the film.
“Oh, she’s incredible in the movie, man, she’s so good,” writer/director Rian Johnson says. “Her performance is so emotional, and there are some moments in it, obviously we didn’t know it was a farewell performance when we were filming it, but I think there are some moments that are going to mean a lot to fans.”
Actor Domhnall Gleeson tells ABC Radio that although Fisher is gone, she’s not forgotten.
“She was a wonderful – ah, was man, that’s sad. She was a wonderful woman,” he says. “And her work lives on and her spirit lives on with her daughter, and the good she did in the world. It’s amazing.”
While fans will have their eyes on Fisher, Walt Disney Company Chairman and CEO Bob Iger will have his eyes on something else also.
“I will be watching the box office constantly,” Iger tells ABC Radio. “Not nervously, ’cause I’m pretty convinced that it’s going to do extremely well…but I will be watching, it’s just that important to the company.”
You can understand why: Disney acquired the Star Wars creator George Lucas’ Lucasfilm company in 2012 for $4.05 billion and released The Force Awakens in 2015. That year, Variety reported The Force Awakens was the highest-grossing film in the history of Walt Disney Studios, domestically. The movie reportedly grossed $936.7 million in North America, and more than $2 billion total worldwide — and that doesn’t include the merchandising of everything from jewelry to toys to clothing, which raked in hundreds of billions since the Lucas deal was signed.
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