When Carrie Fisher died on December 27 at the age of 60, fans around the world mourned the sudden loss of the Star Wars star. Her family and friends expressed their shock and grief on social media, including Mark Hamill, her partner-in-galactic-crime from the start.
In a touching guest column for The Hollywood Reporter, Hamill, the Luke Skywalker to Fisher's Princess Leia, opened up about his decades of friendship with Fisher and the "unique area in each other’s lives" they shared. Star Wars was an adventure they began together, back before they became household names — "It was like we were in a garage band together that somehow hit it huge," he wrote — and Hamill takes care to write about an aspect of their camaraderie that he especially cherished: Her sense of humor and her laughter.
"I remember during Empire we were split up storywise; it was a difficult film to shot and there was a lot of tension on the set," he wrote, recalling on-set goofiness two movies into their friendship. "I was off in the swampland with the puppets and robots, but at least Carrie and Harrison got to work with human beings. Once at lunchtime she said, 'You should try on my jumpsuit.' I said, 'The one-piece white jumpsuit? You’re what, 5’2"? I’ll never get in!' She said, 'Just try.' I put on that Princess Leia zipper jump suit and it was so tight I looked like a Vegas lounge singer. If that wasn’t ridiculous enough, she had me put on one of those bald cap masks with the Bozo hair and glasses and nose and then she walked me around the back lot."
He continued to praise her capacity for the giggles, and how it was such a revealing aspect of her being. "The lengths I would go to hear her laugh — there were no limits. I loved her and loved making her laugh. She would do these crazy things and make me do these crazy things, but I really don’t think they were crazy after all. In a way, it was a defense mechanism for her. She was so off the wall, she could use it as protection. Part of what was so poignant about her was that she was vulnerable, that there was this glimmer of a little girl that was so appealing and it roused the protective nature in my personality."
It's a stunning, heartbreaking, important read, and one that truly captures Hamill's fondness for his dearly departed friend and costar. RIP, Carrie. May the force — and the last laugh — be with you.