Carrie Fisher (born October 21, 1956) is an American actress,
screenwriter and novelist. She is most famous for her portrayal of Princess Leia
in the original Star Wars trilogy, and her bestselling novel, Postcards from the
Carrie was born in Burbank, California, the daughter of the singer Eddie Carrie and the actress Debbie Reynolds. Her paternal grandparents were Jewish immigrants from Russia. Her younger brother is Todd Fisher. Her half-sisters are the actresses Joely Carrie and Tricia Leigh Fisher. Joely and Tricia's mother is the actress Connie Stevens.
When Carrie Fisher was two, her parents divorced, and her father very soon married the actress Elizabeth Taylor. The following year, her mother married the shoe store chain owner Harry Karl who secretly spent her life savings. It was assumed from an early age that Carrie would go into the family show business. Carrie Fisher began appearing with her mother in Las Vegas, Nevada at the age of 12. Carrie attended the Beverly Hills High School, but she left to join her mother on the road. She appeared as a debutante and singer in the hit Broadway revival Irene (1973) starring her mother.
Soon after, Carrie enrolled at London's Central School of Speech and Drama, which she attended for 18 months. Carrie Fisher made her film debut in the Columbia comedy Shampoo (1975) starring Warren Beatty, Julie Christie and Goldie Hawn, with Lee Grant and Jack Warden. In 1977, Carrie starred as Princess Leia Organa in George Lucas' sci-fi film Star Wars opposite Mark Hamill and Harrison Ford, a part she sarcastically claims to have obtained by sleeping "with some nerd".
The huge success of Star Wars made her internationally famous. The character of Princess Leia became a merchandising triumph; there were small plastic action figures of the Princess in toy stores across the United States. She appeared as Princess Leia in the 1978 made-for-TV movie, The Star Wars Holiday Special.
In November 1978 Carrie was the guest host for Saturday Night Live with musical guests The Blues Brothers and special guest Don Novello as the Father Guido Sarducci. Dressed in a gold bikini, she reprised her Princess Leia character from Star Wars in "Beach Blanket Bimbo from Outer Space", a parody sketch of '60s beach party films. Bill Murray and Gilda Radner imitated the Frankie Avalon and Annette Funicello characters. John Belushi played biker Eric Von Zipper, and Dan Aykroyd, with whom Carrie was romantically involved, portrayed Vincent Price.
Carrie appeared in the music video for Ringo Starr's cover of "You're Sixteen" as the love interest in 1978 on Ringo's TV special of that year.
Carrie later appeared in The Blues Brothers movie in a cameo role as Joliet Jake's vengeful ex-lover, listed in the credits as "Mystery Woman." She appeared on Broadway in Censored Scenes From King Kong in 1980. That year, she appeared again as Princess Leia in Star Wars Episode V: The Empire Strikes Back. She made her third and final appearance as Leia in the series in Star Wars Episode VI: Return of the Jedi. After her appearance wearing a golden metal bikini, or slave girl outfit, that almost immediately rose to pop culture icon status, Carrie became a sex symbol for a short period. She is one of the few actors or actresses to star in movies with both John and Jim Belushi, later appearing with the latter in the movie The Man with One Red Shoe. She also was a replacement in the Broadway production of Agnes of God (1982). She appeared in the Woody Allen film Hannah and her Sisters in 1986.
In 1987, Carrie published her first novel, Postcards from the Edge. The book was semi-autobiographical in the sense that she fictionalized and satirized real life events such as her drug addiction of the late 1970s. It became a bestseller, and she received the Los Angeles Pen Award for Best First Novel. In 1989 Carrie played a major supporting role in When Harry Met Sally, and in the same year she played opposite Tom Hanks as his wife in The Burbs.
In 1990, Columbia Pictures released a movie version of Postcards from the Edge, adapted for the screen by Carrie and starring Meryl Streep, Shirley MacLaine, and Dennis Quaid. She also appeared in the movie Drop Dead Fred in 1991. In 1997, Carrie appeared as a therapist in Austin Powers: International Man of Mystery. During the 1990s Carrie also published the novels Surrender the Pink (1991) and Delusions of Grandma (1993).
In the movie Scream 3 (2000), Carrie played an actress mistaken for Carrie Fisher. ("Yeah, I was up for the part of Princess Leia. But who gets it? The girl who slept with George Lucas!") Director's commentary on the Scream 3 DVD suggests that the sequence was in fact penned by Carrie herself.
In 2001, Carrie played a nun in the Kevin Smith comedy Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back. The title spoofs The Empire Strikes Back and the film, which includes Mark Hamill, satirizes many Hollywood movies, including the Star Wars series.
Carrie Fisher also co-wrote the TV comedy movie These Old Broads (2001), of which she was also co-executive producer. It starred her mother, Debbie Reynolds, as well as Elizabeth Taylor, Joan Collins and Shirley MacLaine. In this, Taylor's character, an agent, explains to Reynolds' character, an actress, that she was in an alcoholic blackout when she married the actress's husband, "Freddy."
Besides acting and writing original works, Carrie was one of the top script doctors in Hollywood, working on the screenplays of other writers. She has done uncredited polishes on movies starting with The Wedding Singer and Sister Act, and was hired by the creator of Star Wars, George Lucas, to polish scripts for his 1992 TV series The Young Indiana Jones Chronicles. Her expertise in this area was why she was chosen as one of the interviewers for the screenwriting documentary Dreams on Spec in 2007. Though during an interview in 2004 she said that she no longer does much script doctoring.
Carrie also plays Peter Griffin's boss on the animated sitcom Family Guy and appeared in a book of photographs titled Hollywood Moms (2001) for which she wrote the introduction. Carrie published a Suzanne Vale sequel novel, The Best Awful There Is in 2004.
Carrie wrote and performed in her one-woman play Wishful Drinking at the Geffen Playhouse in Los Angeles from November 7, 2006, to January 14, 2007. Her show played at the Berkeley Repertory Theater through April, 2008. Wishful Drinking played July 2008 in San Jose, California, then at Hartford Stage in August 2008 before moving on to the Arena Stage in Washington, DC in September 2008 and Boston in October 2008.
In 2007 Carrie Fisher she was a full-time judge on FOX's filmmaking-competition reality TV series On the Lot.
Carrie recently joined Turner Classic Movies host Robert Osborne on Saturday evenings for The Essentials with informative and entertaining conversation on Hollywood's best films. She guest-starred in the episode titled "Sex and Another City" from season 3 of Sex and the City with Sarah Jessica Parker. This episode also featured Vince Vaughn, Hugh Hefner and Sam Seder in a guest role. On October 25, 2007, Carrie guest-starred on 30 Rock for the "Rosemary's Baby" Episode 4 of Season 2 for which she received an Emmy Award nomination. She starred as Rosemary Howard. Her last line in the show was a spoof from Star Wars: "Help me Liz Lemon, You're my only hope!". On April 28, 2008, she was a guest on Deal or No Deal.
Carrie was married to musician Paul Simon, and she was in a relationship with him for several years afterwards. During their marriage, she appeared in Simon's music video for the track "Rene And Georgette Magritte With Their Dog After The War". She is referenced in many of Simon's songs, including "Hearts and Bones", "Graceland", "She Moves On", and "Allergies".
Following her divorce from Simon, Carrie was briefly engaged to the actor and comedian Dan Aykroyd, who proposed on the set of their co-starring film The Blues Brothers. She has stated: "We had rings, we got blood tests, the whole shot. But then I got back together with Paul Simon." She finally left Simon for good.
Subsequently, she had a relationship with Creative Artists Agency principal and casting agent Bryan Lourd. They had one child together, Billie Catherine Lourd (born July 17, 1992). The couple's relationship ended when Lourd left her for a man. Though Carrie has described Lourd as her second husband in interviews, according to a 2004 profile of the actress and writer, she and Lourd were never legally married.
In an interview on public radio in 2005, Carrie joked that she was afraid if she ever became senile she might begin to slip back into her Princess Leia character. Carrie has publicly discussed her problems with drugs, her battles with bipolar disorder, and overcoming an addiction to prescription medication, most notably on ABC's 20/20 and The Secret Life of the Manic Depressive with Stephen Fry for the BBC. She discussed her new memoir Wishful Drinking and various topics in it with Matt Lauer on NBC's Today on December 10, 2008. This interview was followed by a similar appearance on The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson on December 12, 2008. Carrie spoke about Wishful Drinking on NPR's Talk of the Nation on December 16, 2008. She also spoke about her life and troubles on the NPR quiz show Wait Wait... Don't Tell Me! on January 31, 2009.
Carrie has described herself as an "enthusiastic agnostic who would be happy to be shown that there is a God."
This Carrie Fisher Biography Page is Copyright © 2004 - 2009 Chuck Ayoub