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"I wouldn't have believed anyone could escape a Hutt's chains with her life, much less take the Hutt's life instead."
"I wouldn't have, either, until we did it."
―Ransolm Casterfo and Leia Organa, discussing footage of the latter weaponizing the chains of her dancing-girl costume[src]

Dancing-girl costumes were a style of performance costume for female dancers that was also worn by some beings who had been enslaved. They consisted of an ornamented bronzium chest harness on top with varying garments on bottom, such as a lashaa silk skirt with jerba leather boots, and they revealed much of the wearer's skin. During the Clone Wars, the costumes were worn by many Twi'lek women in locations where they were enslaved or performed for other beings, such as on Nal Hutta and Zygerria.

When Jabba Desilijic Tiure captured Princess Leia Organa at his palace, he forced her to wear a dancing-girl costume and a chain. She strangled him to death with that chain, then exploded his sail barge as she escaped. A holocube recording of Organa killing the Hutt won her the respect of many Niktos, who dubbed her "the Huttslayer." Later in Senator Organa's life, Rinnrivin Di offered her the footage when she investigated his cartel. Di failed to learn from Jabba's fate and he, too, was killed by Organa.

Description[]

Dancing-girl costumes were a style of costume worn for performances by female dancers.[1] They were also worn by some beings who had been enslaved by[4] the Zygerrian Slave Empire on the planet[8] Zygerria,[4] by crime lords of the Hutt species[7] on the planet Tatooine,[3] or by the Hutt Clan and the Grand Hutt Council that ruled it[2] on the Hutt-controlled planet[9] Nal Hutta.[2] For such beings, the costume could serve as everyday attire[6] or palace garb.[7]

The costumes were distinguished by their top half,[10] a molded bronzium harness[5] worn on the chest that had metal filigree on the cups and was fastened with cords criss-crossed behind the neck and back.[3] The top was accompanied by variable pieces on the lower half, such as a bikini brief with filigree complementing the harness[11] or a lashaa silk skirt with separate panels suspended from a metal belt.[5]

History[]

Pre-civil war[]

At the Boonta Eve Classic in 32 BBY,[12] Jabba Desilijic Tiure brought one of his favorite enslaved singers, the half-Theelin Diva Shaliqua.[13] She wore a dancing-girl costume consisting of a matching harness and briefs layered over baggy trousers, chunky metal bangles on both wrists, leather armbands on both arms, and a collar.[11]

A chorus girl at Gardulla the Hutt's Palace

During the Clone Wars, an advertisement on Coruscant for underground entertainment at Show Girls depicted a female Twi'lek in a dancing-girl costume.[14] When Jabba's uncle Ziro Desilijic Tiure was imprisoned at Gardulla Besadii the Elder's palace on Nal Hutta,[2] three Twi'lek chorus girls[10] wore dancing costumes to perform for the Grand Hutt Council alongside Pa'lowick singer Sy Snootles. Their costumes paired ornamented harnesses with skimpy briefs, thigh-high stockings, collars on their necks,[2] and leather strapping wrapped around their legs and feet to create shoes. They also wore headdresses styled to resemble the heads of specific Hutts,[10] crowned with vibrantly-colored feathers. The chorus girl styled after Jabba spoke with Snootles after their performance.[2]

On Zygerria[4] in 20 BBY,[15] an enslaved Twi'lek clad in a dancing-girl costume was displayed in a market on the planet by a Zygerrian slaver to a fellow Zygerrian and a Neimoidian.[4] Later that year,[16] several Twi'leks wore the outfit in the city of Bilbousa on Nal Hutta, including a pair who escorted a drunken Sy Snootles out of a saloon and others within the saloon who danced on the bartop and conversed with customers.[6]

The Huttslayer[]

"Come on. We gotta get out of here."
―Leia Organa, after killing Jabba the Hutt, to R2-D2[src]

In 4 ABY,[12] the Force-sensitive human Princess Leia Organa infiltrated Jabba's Palace on Tatooine disguised as a bounty hunter,[3] the Ubese male Boushh,[17] who had seemingly captured the Wookiee Chewbacca. They planned to rescue Han Solo from imprisonment in carbonite. Organa freed Solo from the carbonite, but the Hutt had not been fooled and captured Organa as well.[3]

Using the chains he put on her, Leia Organa strangles and kills Jabba Desilijic Tiure.

Organa was made to dress as one of Jabba's palace slaves[7] and chained at his throne. The garb she wore included a maroon lashaa silk skirt suspended from a belt, jerba leather boots, and a bronzium harness.[5] She also wore small hoop earrings, hair ornaments, a cuff in a spiral design on her upper left arm, a bracelet on her right wrist,[3] and a heavy collar around her neck,[1] all in a metal that matched the harness. There were loops on the collar through which a heavy chain was threaded. Her hair was styled in a braid that was coiled into a bun high on her head and then left to hang in a single, long plait.[3]

Organa's twin brother, Luke Skywalker, entered the palace as well. When Jabba dropped Skywalker into the rancor pit below the throne, she could only watch as he fought and killed Jabba's pet rancor while the Hutt held her chain. Jabba sentenced Skywalker, Solo, and Chewbacca to be executed by the sarlacc within the Great Pit of Carkoon; he brought Organa alongside him to watch from his sail barge. As the group and their friend Lando Calrissian fought back against the scheduled execution, Organa took advantage of the chaos. She knocked out the controls to Jabba's throne, grabbed her chains, and threw them around the Hutt's neck.[3] Her pure hatred for the Hutt fueled her[1] as she unknowingly drew on the dark side for the physical strength[18] to strangle Jabba with the chains and kill him.[3]

After killing the Hutt, the astromech droid R2-D2 assisted Organa with breaking the chain, and she joined the battle on the barge until Skywalker directed her to point a deck cannon at the deck itself. The pair held onto each other and used a rope to swing to safety on a skiff as the cannon fired and exploded Jabba's barge behind them.[3]

The legend of Leia Organa[]

"Huttslayer. This is what we call you among ourselves, and it is a far greater title than either senator or princess could ever be. The Niktos know you for the warrior you are, Huttslayer, and you will always have friends among us."
―Rinnrivin Di, regarding his holocube footage[src]

By 28 ABY,[19] Senator Leia Organa of the New Republic sometimes had clear memories of sensory details, particularly the weight of the slave collar and the stench of her surroundings, when something reminded her of the events at Jabba's palace. One of those memories struck her while fellow senators discussed whether or not to officially intervene with Kajain'sa'Nikto crime lord Rinnrivin Di's cartel, rumored to be growing as powerful as the Hutts had once been. Organa volunteered to launch an investigation of Di at his base on Bastatha.[1]

Rinnrivin Di, one of the many Niktos who admired Leia Organa, had obtained footage of the "Huttslayer" event.

When Organa met with Di, he welcomed her and presented her with a holocube containing a recording of Jabba's death. He told her that many Niktos revered her as the Huttslayer, a warrior who rid the galaxy of Jabba the Hutt. He also indicated that there were very few copies of the footage in circulation; the Hutts had suppressed it, not wanting proof of their own vulnerability to be passed around. Di told Organa that she would always have allies among the Niktos. He then tried to leverage her reputation for this lawless act to forge an alliance with her, proposing that she turn a blind eye to his cartel's spicerunning and other underworld dealings. Organa later showed the holocube to her colleague, Ransolm Casterfo, in the course of explaining her run-in with Di. Instead of disgust, as she anticipated, Casterfo expressed admiration.[1]

On her next meeting with Di, Organa returned the holocube to him. He played the recording over and over, and confessed that he envied that Organa had the memory, while he had only the recording. Unknown to Di, Organa had slipped a microscopic sensor beacon into the cube, predicting that he would keep the prize close. She used the tracker to narrow down his location on Sibensko and discovered an underwater complex used by his cartel. By then, Di had discovered the tracker and confronted her; once more, he replayed the recording. Despite his vocal admiration, however, Di had failed to learn from the Hutt's fate and underestimated Organa to his peril: she escaped, killing him and the warriors backing him up in the process.[1]

Behind the scenes[]

Conception[]

Dancing-girl costumes first appeared in the 1983 original trilogy film, Star Wars: Episode VI Return of the Jedi, where versions were worn by actress Carrie Fisher and stunt performer Tracey Eddon. The bikini-style costume consisted of a brassiere, a skirt made with maroon silk veils, suede boots, matching jewelry, and hair accessories.[3]

Initial design work[]

"I kept drawing it and drawing it and designing it and designing it. It was just George [Lucas], Joe [Johnston], Ralph [McQuarrie], and myself for the longest time, and every time we'd get into that scene I kept pushing that idea. Richard was pushing for it. I think Joe was pushing the idea as well. [...] I remember George saying, 'I don't know if you can convince Carrie [Fisher] to do that'."
―Nilo Rodis-Jamero, one of the costume's designers[src]

"I was shocked when I found out it was all George's idea," Fisher told Starlog of the costume and George Lucas.[20] Costume designer Nilo Rodis-Jamero and director Richard Marquand, who both found Fisher attractive, were early proponents of creating a dancing costume for her to wear.[21] Marquand hated the costumes created by John Mollo for Star Wars: Episode V The Empire Strikes Back, particularly Leia's Cloud City attire, and thought they did not show how sexy he considered her to be.[22][23] Fisher felt differently about her prior costumes; though she was critical of the use of gaffer's tape instead of an actual bra under her primary dress in Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope,[24][25] she considered her Hoth snow suit in The Empire Strikes Back one of her favorites and later joked that it had a "gas station attendant" look she enjoyed.[26][27]

1981 concept art, illustrated by Nilo Rodis-Jamero in collaboration with Aggie Guerard Rodgers

Return of the Jedi screenplay cowriter Lawrence Kasdan and co-producer Howard G. Kazanjian had a story conference with Marquand and Lucas from July 13 to July 17, 1981. As they discussed how to get the characters into Jabba's palace, Marquand suggested that Leia could enter in disguise and get discovered as a reason to turn her into a dancing girl. After Marquand said it would be nice to add a chain, Kasdan asked how they felt about Leia being the one to kill Jabba, and Marquand and Lucas both suggested that she use the chain to strangle the Hutt. The second draft of the script on September 21 included a description that Leia was "dressed in the skimpy costume of a dancing girl; a chain runs from a manacle/necklace on her neck to her new master, Jabba the Hutt."[22]

Because Rodis-Jamero designed costumes from a conceptual point of view and not practical knowledge, he and co-producer Jim Bloom realized an experienced costume designer would be needed to execute the designs. Aggie Guerard Rodgers, who had previously worked with Lucas on American Graffiti and More American Graffiti, was hired[21] in fall 1981. Prior to Rodgers joining the team, Rodis-Jamero met with jeweler and sculptor Richard Miller, a friend of Industrial Light & Magic modeler Lorne Peterson who had created bronze sculptures in a style similar to Rodis-Jamero's concepts. Miller created three-dimensional representations and would later sculpt the faux metal components of the costume as the film's credited jeweler.[3] In a costume featurette for Star Wars: The Complete Saga, Miller recalled Lucas telling him the purpose of the costume's skimpiness was to show that Leia had grown up.[28] Interviewed by Rolling Stone after Return of the Jedi premiered, Fisher commented that the filmmakers had decided one of the ways to make Leia Organa more feminine than in prior films was removing her clothing.[29]

Rodis-Jamero and Rodgers collaborated to produce sketches of their concepts, with the former creating the actual illustrations.[21] According to Rodgers, Lucas specifically requested that they create a bikini.[30] In Star Wars: The Annotated Screenplays, Rodis-Jamero said that Lucas always talked about a slave-girl outfit, but Rodis-Jamero struggled and kept coming up with clunky concepts reminiscent of Ben-Hur. Rodgers cited the paintings of Frank Frazetta, one of Lucas's favorite artists, as an inspiration for her. She envisioned having 25[21] or 45 yards of silk flowing through the air, but it was not feasible[22] to have that much material in the way of movement.[31]

Costume fitting and construction[]

Lucas had no objections to the costume concept, but was doubtful that Fisher could be convinced to wear it. Star Wars Costumes: The Original Trilogy states that she did not hesitate;[21] Fisher's accounts differ. About two months before filming began,[32] Lucas invited Fisher to San Francisco to show her a picture of the costume.[33] She later described herself as "aghast,"[34] thinking at first that he was kidding,[35][36] and she was very nervous about it.[35] For A New Hope, she had been required to lose weight, while for The Empire Strikes Back, she was told to gain.[24] Fisher believed Lucas had shown her the picture to successfully frighten her into exercising,[33] and she grew preoccupied with how she would look in the costume.[36]

Jeweler Richard Miller describes the structural components of the costume.

Instead of making a full-body or torso cast of Fisher, which Miller described as an extremely uncomfortable process that required getting naked and having plaster thrown on one's body, he utilized a wax casting technique used in bronze sculpting. The costume components were first sculpted in soft wax around bendable armature wire, then the wax was placed in an ice chest and transported from Miller's home studio to Lucas's Park Way house for Fisher's initial fitting. By wearing the cold wax against her bare skin, her body heat warmed and softened the wax so it could be shaped to fit her. Fisher's friend and fellow actress Penny Marshall accompanied her for the fitting with Rodis-Jamero. Miller then used the wax to mold and cast the structural components of the costume in a dense urethane.[21]

In the decades since filming, the flaking gold paint on the bra has exposed the urethane rubber.

The finished costume was made of silk, painted resin, leather, and rubber.[37] Miller used gold-painted red[38] or orange dense urethane rubber for the structural components of Fisher's costume, and a more flexible latex rubber for Eddon's stunt version. Leather lining[21] was added to the backs of the structural pieces to improve its wearability,[28] and fabric elements were added at ILM's San Rafael costume shop. One of Miller's students made the earrings, and boot maker John Shrader made the suede boots to which Miller added sculptural filigree. The faux metal elements were touched up during filming with Treasure Gold polish.[21]

Fisher arrived in England shortly after New Year's Day in 1982 for makeup and costume fittings prior to the beginning of filming at Elstree Studios.[22] Due to Fisher's weight loss, the costume did not have the intended snug fit. Miller made a replacement to send to England,[28] but he was never fully satisfied with its appearance in the film. Part of the fit problem was due to Miller designing it to have the bra's support cords crossed in front, but the on-set dressers instead crossed them in the back, telling Miller that it had looked too confining.[21]

Production[]

Filming[]

"The thing that killed me about this setup was, Okay you put me in this bathing suit—but then I have to stop talking from here on? Strip me—and I'm silent! I am defiant with everyone else—Tarkin, Darth Vader—but this slug really shuts me up. Any defiance I had in the other movies—all gone."
―Carrie Fisher, regarding Leia Organa's characterization in the costume[src]

Though not made of genuine metal,[21][28][37] the costume still had little flexibility on Fisher and did not move with her body. Surrounded by a predominantly male cast and crew, she was initially embarrassed before eventually finding that "dignity was out of the question." She later said that a prop man would check after shots to see if the top had slipped, then she began checking herself between takes and would be asked about her breasts before they resumed.[39] "It was a problem keeping it in place," Fisher told Bantha Tracks. "It drove the wardrobe person nuts."[40] She later made light of it: "It was like steel, not steel, but hard plastic, and if you stood behind me you could see straight to Florida. You'll have to ask Boba Fett about that."[41] Uncredited wardrobe assistant Janet Lucas-Wakely, who dressed Fisher throughout filming, said Fisher was happy in her princess dress and fighting gear, but hated the dancing costume and was uncomfortable in it.[21] The throne room shoots at Elstree Studios were freezing cold,[20] but the more confined studio set for Jabba's sail barge grew so hot from the lighting that Fisher may have been the only one relatively comfortable with the temperature while the fully-covered performers and crew struggled with the heat.[22]

Fisher enjoyed joking around with Jabba's puppeteers during downtime,[39] but she later remarked that Leia's character changed when put in the costume, going from unafraid of Vader and Tarkin to barely speaking while chained by the Hutt, despite Fisher attempting to ad lib lines. In a post-release Starburst interview, she commented, "At that point I was amazed that Leia would just sit there, in those skimpy clothes, saying practically nothing. The only way they could justify that, I told them, was if Jabba pulled my chains real tight so I couldn't speak. I couldn't see my character not talking.[42] According to Marquand, Fisher loved Jabba during filming and would tell the crew operating the puppet's hand to pull the chain more taut so she would know how Leia felt. Frustrated that Leia had changed from defiant to silent in the costume, Fisher said that she decided to become a writer while shooting the palace scenes.[22]

Carrie Fisher and stunt double Tracey Eddon, who were not supposed to be tanned, sunbathed in the Yuma Desert.

In addition to her weight loss, Fisher was required to sit up straight in front of Jabba so she would not have lines or wrinkles around her waist from bending or moving.[33] The discomfort of maintaining the rigid posture while wearing the costume contributed to her satisfaction in the scene where Leia strangled and killed Jabba with the chain.[35] She was asked if she wanted a stunt double to do the scene, but said she really wanted to kill Jabba herself.[22]

The desert exterior scenes were filmed outside of Yuma, Arizona in April 1982.[22] In the downtime between filming, Fisher and Eddon would sunbathe in their costumes. Fisher told Starlog it angered the crew as they were not supposed to be tanned;[20] she would later say they were popular with the crew during those times.[22] Sunbathing gave her and Eddon a chance to have fun while feeling ridiculous in their costumes,[20] and she would fondly recall decades later that they were "like the Doublemint Intergalactic Twins."[43]

Marketing[]

The "Style B" poster by Kazuhiko Sano

While in England in February 1982, Fisher did a promotional photoshoot wearing her various Return of the Jedi costumes, including the dancing costume. Those and other photographs of Fisher in the bikini were subsequently utilized in marketing the film.[22]

Prior to the theatrical release, artist Kazuhiko Sano created the "Style B" poster, the first Return of the Jedi poster to feature a collage of characters. Sano was not given any particular art direction at first, and his original sketches were largely accepted by Lucasfilm with few changes. The only specific request officials made to Sano was to replace an existing image of Leia Organa with one of the princess wearing her slave costume.[44] Some of the rejected concepts by other artists made the costume appear to have a bikini bottom rather than a skirt.[22]

Reception[]

By Carrie Fisher[]

"Listen! I am not a sex symbol, so that's an opinion of someone. I don't share that."
"I don't think that's the right—"
"Word for it? Well, you should fight for your outfit. Don't be a slave like I was."
"All right, I'll fight."
"You keep fighting against that slave outfit."
―Carrie Fisher and Daisy Ridley, with the former interviewing the latter[src]

Carrie Fisher experienced body dysmorphia throughout her life.[27][45] She sometimes expressed pride looking back at how she had appeared in the costume,[27][41] but during the time that she wore it and for years later, she felt otherwise. In 2011, she was a guest on The Oprah Winfrey Show and discussed becoming a spokesperson for the Jenny Craig weight loss program, saying, "I didn't even realize at the time that I was sort of the Star Wars pin-up, the geek pin-up. I thought I was fat then, so now finally it all caught up with me."[46] Later that year, she wrote in the memoir Shockaholic that reports of her death would include "a picture of a stern-looking girl wearing some kind of metal bikini lounging on a giant drooling squid."[47]

Carrie and her beloved dog Gary Fisher posed with her wax figure at Madame Tussauds in May 2016.

At Celebration Anaheim in 2015, Fisher told host James Arnold Taylor that she disliked being regarded as a centerfold in an iconic bathing suit, and that she had not thought of herself that way while wearing it.[36] Also in that year, she advised her sequel trilogy co-star Daisy Ridley, who portrayed Rey, to fight if asked to wear similar costumes.[48]

Fisher wrote about her metal bikini in her final memoir, The Princess Diarist, which was published on November 22, 2016,[49] several weeks before her death on December 27.[50] She commented on cosplaying at conventions by women and men who looked fantastic in the costume. She named it "Jabba Killer" and wrote that killing Jabba the Hutt was her favorite moment of her personal film history. One of her anecdotes was about her wax figure at Madame Tussauds, which she visited in May of that year with her emotional support dog, Gary Fisher. In her closing remarks on what she would be if she had never been Princess Leia, she wrote that she would "[n]ever have been asked if I thought I'd been objectified by silently wearing a gold bikini, while seated on a giant laughing cruel slug, while everyone chatted gaily around me."[34]

By others[]

Rolling Stone cover photograph by Aaron Rapoport

A production still of Leia in the costume was featured on the cover of People magazine's June 6 issue that included an interview with Fisher.[39] She did a beach photo shoot with Aaron Rapoport for Rolling Stone, and the photographs were featured on the cover and in an interview with Fisher for the July 1983 issue; another interview with George Lucas was entitled "Star Wars Goes on Vacation." The cover depicts Fisher as Leia Organa sitting on a beach towel alongside an Ewok, Darth Vader holding a boombox, and a Gamorrean guard holding a beach ball.[29] Fisher later shared during convention panels, such as her "Date with a Princess" at Celebration VI, that she really liked doing the photo shoot.[43] In 1984, Rodgers and Rodis-Jamero won the Best Costumes award at the 11th Saturn Awards for their work on Return of the Jedi.[51]

Articles in science fiction publications shortly after the theatrical release were already remarking favorably on the costume and Fisher's appearance in it,[52] and the look became iconic. Interviews with her often highlighted the costume and asked her about it.[40][53] The "metal bikini" or "Slave Leia" look has been described as a fan favorite and a pop culture icon.[54] Fan reactions to the costume have been framed as regarding Leia as a sex object without considering the story context.[55]

In 2015, Richard Miller put a set-used costume, design materials, and his concept sculpts up as an auction lot in a film memorabilia auction. The costume was sent back to Miller and not used in filming because it did not fit Fisher's changed measurements. The winning bidder was Gus Lopez, a Star Wars collector and author of articles on collecting who operates The Star Wars Archive website.[56]

As Fisher had predicted, reports when she died in 2016 highlighted her appearance in Leia's bikini costume, including on the sports blog Deadspin,[57] the Los Angeles Times newspaper,[58] and two articles in the trade journal The Hollywood Reporter.[54][59]

Legacy[]

In Star Wars[]

A dancing-girl costume appeared in the 1999 prequel trilogy film, Star Wars: Episode I The Phantom Menace, worn by an uncredited extra[11] whose character was later identified as Diva Shaliqua.[60] The Jedi Temple Archives special feature for Star Wars: The Clone Wars The Complete Season Three includes concept art for the chorus girls seen in the Star Wars: The Clone Wars third season episode "Hunt for Ziro." The art notes that their attire is "similar to slave Leia bikini."[10] Other versions of the costume appeared throughout the Star Wars Legends continuity, including in comic books[61] and video games.[62][63][64][65] The 1996 novel Shield of Lies, written by Michael P. Kube-McDowell, first identified it as a Huttese slave-girl costume.[66]

The film-used costume was exhibited as part of Star Wars: The Magic of Myth at the National Air and Space Museum from 1997 to 1999 before going on tour with the Smithsonian Institution Traveling Exhibition Service.[67] The Smithsonian Institution exhibited it on tour again from 2015 to 2018 as part of Rebel, Jedi, Princess, Queen: Star Wars and the Power of Costume.[37]

Controversy about merchandise[]

"Not only did I like recasting that outfit as a memory of Leia being really strong and kick-ass, but think about it—for a human being to kill a Hutt with her bare hands? That's unbelievable. Anybody who would be able to pull that off would be remembered for it. That would be legend."
―Claudia Gray, on reframing "Slave Leia" as "Huttslayer"[src]

Disney depicted Leia wearing the costume in children's books published in 2015, such as Rescue from Jabba's Palace[68] and the Return of the Jedi Little Golden Book.[69] During that summer, local news stations featured parents complaining about action figures on children's toy shelves wearing the garb. Rumors began circulating that Disney would be phasing out merchandise featuring "Slave Leia," including comic book artist J. Scott Campbell alleging that Disney was actively in the process of doing so.[70] Fisher disagreed with the idea of eliminating it. In The Wall Street Journal, she addressed a specific complaint regarding how parents could explain the bikini and chain to their children, "Tell them that a giant slug captured me and forced me to wear that stupid outfit, and then I killed him because I didn't like it. And then I took it off. Backstage."[45] She made similar comments to The Daily Beast[27] and the Los Angeles Times.[71]

Bloodline by Claudia Gray canonized the fanon nickname "Huttslayer" and identified the outfit as a "dancing-girl costume."

During the peak of the controversy, a user on Twitter with the pseudonym "Angie P."[72] called for Leia to be known as the "Huttslayer" instead of "Slave Leia."[73] The 2016 novel Bloodline, written by Claudia Gray, canonized the term "Huttslayer."[1] Gray credited Angie P. for bringing the fanon term to her attention and said she noticed it around the time she was writing that section of the book. Rather than referring to it in Bloodline as a slave outfit, she identified it as a dancing-girl costume, and treated Leia's actions in the Huttslayer outfit as legendary in-universe.[74]

An interview with Lucasfilm president Kathleen Kennedy in the February 2016 issue of Vanity Fair addressed the merchandise rumors, saying that Disney was not banning the bikini's image from future Star Wars paraphernalia. The article noted that Kennedy had a statuette outside her office of the Return of the Jedi cast, including Leia in the costume. Kennedy doubted Lucas would put Leia in a bikini if the film were made in more recent times. Mellody Hobson, Lucas's wife, disagreed with Kennedy; she said, "George is not apologetic about that bikini," and added, "He thinks that was a very important scene. He would probably do the same thing today. He is not apologetic at all."[75]

The dancing-girl costume has continued to make visual appearances in canon stories and reference materials. For instance, it appeared in Star Wars Galaxy of Adventures, an animated microseries debuting on StarWarsKids.com that adapts stories from the Star Wars films. Leia wears the attire in Return of the Jedi adaptations released in 2019; "Luke vs. Jabba - Sail Barge Escape" debuted on May 10[76] and "Luke vs. the Rancor - Wrath of the Rancor" followed on May 31.[77] It was featured in the DK Publishing reference book Star Wars: The Complete Visual Dictionary, New Edition, which was published on September 18, 2018. The page that includes the costume largely matches[5] the original version from the 1998 book Star Wars: The Visual Dictionary, but the updated version changes the heading "Jabba's Slave" and the label "Slave girl harness"[78] to "Huttslayer" and "Bronzium harness," respectively.[5]

In popular culture[]

In broader popular culture, Leia's dancing-girl costume and others inspired by it have appeared in episodes of the television series Friends,[79] Chuck,[80] and Bring Back...;[81] the competition show Dancing with the Stars[82] and the game show Deal or No Deal;[83] and the animated series Family Guy,[84][85] American Dad!,[86] and two Star Wars-themed Robot Chicken specials.[87][88] They have also appeared in the video game World of Warcraft[89] and the film Fanboys.[90]

Disputed and conflicting information[]

On Twitter in 2015, Fisher responded to a tweet from @hamstachick which asked her about the truth of an article published in 2014 by The Geek Twins blog,[91] "15 Interesting Facts About the Slave Leia Costume [Movies]."[92] In a follow-up to Fisher's tweet, The Geek Twins published a new article that listed their sources for the prior article, including a 2006 article on IGN[93] that published previously-unreported claims about the costume, "Star Wars Secrets: Leia's Teeny Bikini,"[94] and Wookieepedia's out-of-universe article on the costume,[93] which had cited the IGN article.[95]

Fisher labeled as not true[91] claims from IGN[93] that one wardrobe assistant checked after each take to make sure Fisher's breasts had not fallen out, and that the bikini was created in response to her complaints about her previous costumes and reportedly saying people could not tell "she was a woman" in them;[94] the latter item had not been reported prior to IGN's article, but subsequently became widespread.[96] She also marked as not true[91] details cited to Wookieepedia[93] that a moldmaker was replaced when he was too excited about prospectively making a mold of her torso, and that she was unhappy with the costume and called it "what supermodels will eventually wear in the seventh ring of hell."[95] Wookieepedia cited the former to Lorne Peterson's remarks in a Homing Beacon newsletter from 2006,[97] and the latter to a 1999 Newsweek article written by Fisher.[98] The Geek Twins noted it was unclear what aspect of the item sourced to her Newsweek article Fisher was disputing.[93]

Aggie Guerard Rodgers has said that the costume used a hard metal piece when Fisher was not doing stunts, and a rubber piece for stunts;[99] Wookieepedia previously cited this erroneous information.[95] Rodgers was quoted in The Making of Return of the Jedi as saying Lucas did not tell her "Frank Frazetta" when designing the costume,[22] but she said in 2018 that Lucas had requested a Frazetta-inspired costume.[30]

Appearances[]

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Sources[]

Notes and references[]

  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 1.3 1.4 1.5 1.6 1.7 1.8 Bloodline
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 2.5 2.6 2.7 TCW mini logo.jpg Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Hunt for Ziro"
  3. 3.00 3.01 3.02 3.03 3.04 3.05 3.06 3.07 3.08 3.09 3.10 3.11 Star Wars: Episode VI Return of the Jedi
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 4.3 4.4 4.5 TCW mini logo.jpg Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Slaves of the Republic"
  5. 5.0 5.1 5.2 5.3 5.4 5.5 5.6 5.7 Star Wars: The Complete Visual Dictionary, New Edition
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 TCW mini logo.jpg Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Friends and Enemies"
  7. 7.0 7.1 7.2 7.3 Ultimate Star Wars, New Edition
  8. StarWars-DatabankII.png Zygerria in the Databank (backup link)
  9. StarWars-DatabankII.png Nal Hutta in the Databank (backup link)
  10. 10.0 10.1 10.2 10.3 Star Wars: The Clone Wars The Complete Season Three — Jedi Temple Archives: "Hunt for Ziro"
  11. 11.0 11.1 11.2 Star Wars: Episode I The Phantom Menace
  12. 12.0 12.1 Star Wars: Galactic Atlas
  13. Star Wars: Geektionary: The Galaxy from A - Z
  14. TCW mini logo.jpg Star Wars: The Clone Wars – "Lethal Trackdown"
  15. Star Wars: Galactic Atlas places the Battle of Mon Cala and the skirmish in Theed in 20 BBY. As "Slaves of the Republic," in which the Twi'lek slave wearing the dancing-girl costume on Zygerria is seen, takes place between the events of the episodes the other events are attached to according to StarWars.com Star Wars: The Clone Wars Chronological Episode Order on StarWars.com (backup link), the Twi'lek must have worn the outfit in 20 BBY.
  16. Star Wars: Galactic Atlas places the Battle of Mon Cala and the skirmish in Theed to 20 BBY. As "Friends and Enemies," in which the Twi'leks wearing the dancing-girl costume at the Bilbousa saloon are seen, takes place between the events of the episodes the other events are attached to according to StarWars.com Star Wars: The Clone Wars Chronological Episode Order on StarWars.com (backup link), the Twi'leks must have worn the outfit in 20 BBY.
  17. Star Wars Character Encyclopedia: Updated and Expanded
  18. Skywalker: A Family at War
  19. The Star Wars Book establishes that events of the novel Bloodline occur 28 years after those of the film Star Wars: Episode IV A New Hope, which Star Wars: Galactic Atlas dates to the year 0 ABY; therefore, Bloodline occurs in 28 ABY.
  20. 20.0 20.1 20.2 20.3 StarlogLogo.png "Cover Story: Carrie Fisher"—Starlog 71 (web archive)
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  22. 22.00 22.01 22.02 22.03 22.04 22.05 22.06 22.07 22.08 22.09 22.10 22.11 The Making of Return of the Jedi
  23. Murdoch, Alan. "The Jedi Interview". Starburst. no. 58, Starburst Publishing Ltd. ISSN 0955-114X. "Carrie (Fisher) has made no secret of the fact that she was just this sort of kid. This sort of boy in girl's clothing, who marches up and down and shouts at everybody. She felt her character was someone who could do with a bit of development. And I said that happened to coincide exactly with my feelings. In the last movie, the Princess became such a bitch, she really was a drag. It became very boring. For me. I was sure there was a lot more depth there we could use. [...] Turn her into more of a woman. Carrie said, 'Oh yes, if only I could just break it down' — there were tears for a moment! — 'I just don't want to do this anymore! It'd be nice.' And of course, it was. [...] She's a very sexy, attractive lady and in this film we'll get to find that out." (web archive)
  24. 24.0 24.1 White, Timothy. "Slaves to the Empire: The 'Star Wars' Kids Talk Back". Rolling Stone. Wenner, Jann (managing editor and publisher), no. 322, 1980-07-24. ISSN 0035-791X. (web archive)
  25. Fisher, Carrie. Wishful Drinking. Simon & Schuster. ISBN 1-4391-0225-2.
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  36. 36.0 36.1 36.2 SWYTlogo.png Carrie Fisher Interview with StarWars.com | Star Wars Celebration Anaheim on the official Star Wars YouTube channel (backup link) "I looked at that costume when he showed it to me and I thought: A. he's joking, B. how do I… how am I gonna look in that, how am I gonna—I have to make myself look better to be able to wear that, and then I got preoccupied with that." [...] "The worst thing about it, though, is they have these sites where they take people that were… what is that called, when you're a—sex! No, centerfold; nothing to do with sex, except when you're alone. And so they did all these people that had iconic bathing suits, and I'm there with, like, Raquel Welch—my peer—and Brigitte Bardot—also someone I identity with strongly. That crowd. And that, I didn't like that, because you have to live up to something there, and I forget what it is, but it wasn't something I was really focused on in that way."
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