Star Wars: The Last Jedi might have been nothing short of commercial and critical success, however, the film which had been applauded by critics left and right also became one of the most divisive entries in the Star Wars franchise. The film had quite a number of controversial sequences, one of which included the way General Organa (the late Carrie Fisher) used the Force to save herself from death.
Star Wars had long since revealed Leia to be Force-sensitive like her twin, Luke (Mark Hamill), but fans never really got to see the Star Wars Princess user the Force. Well, until The Last Jedi, that is.
Now, thanks to the new canon book Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge - Black Spire (via Screen Rant), we know why Leia never really made use of her Force-sensitivity. The book tells the story of Vi Moradi, one of the Resistance’s top spy, and how she comes to land on the planet of Batuu. There she comes across Ylena, a sympathetic character with direct ties to the Church of the Force and Lor San Tekka. After hearing Vi Moradi confirm the stories about General Organa’s self-rescue, Ylena tries to explain why Leia never really used the Force.
"'All these years,' Ylena mused, her eyes far off. 'All these years, she had access to the Force and never used it. She could’ve swayed the Senate but wasn’t willing to use cheap tricks when she believed in diplomacy and freedom. That’s a strong woman and a good leader right there. And yet, in her time of greatest hardship, when it benefited not only her own needs but the greater good, she reached deep inside and claimed that connection that had always waited, dormant, for her call.'"
This is a statement that echoes the explanation made by The Last Jedi director Rian Johnson. According to the filmmaker, Leia used the Force in the film as an act of self-preservation. Her life was in danger, so Leia acted out of instinct to protect herself by tapping into the power that she didn’t really use up until that point.
Now, the question is, will we see Leia continue to use the Force in Episode IX? Let’s wait and see.
Star Wars: The Rise of Skywalker premieres December 20, 2019.