When news of Carrie Fisher’s death first broke, fellow Star Wars actor and lifelong friend Mark Hamill initially tweeted a photo of the pair with the caption “no words.” Seeing as how they’d known each other since first meeting in 1976, that Hamill would be devastated by Fisher’s passing should come as no surprise. Nor should his ability to memorialize her as soon as he’d collected himself and his thoughts, which he did late Tuesday on his official Facebook page. Yet the 133 words Hamill composed then weren’t enough, so he paid tribute to Fisher again with a much longer guest column in the Hollywood Reporter.
“Carrie and I occupied a unique area in each other’s lives,” Hamill explains. “It was like we were in a garage band together that somehow hit it huge.” The 65-year-old actor reiterates much of what he’d said in his Facebook post, though the extra space the Hollywood Reporter afforded him allows the emotional details to flow that much stronger. Especially when Hamill recalls their first meeting in London:
The first time I met Carrie was at dinner in London before we started filming together. I had been the first one to go over to Africa with Sir Alec Guinness and the robots, to do all the desert planet stuff, then I came back to London and then Harrison Ford came over. Carrie was the last piece in the puzzle to come to London. So I said to the production office, “I’d like to meet her before we work together.” They worked out that we’d meet for dinner. You know, she was 19 years old at the time. I was a worldly 24. So I was thinking, “Oh my God, it’ll be like working with a high school kid.” But I was just bowled over. I mean she was just so instantly ingratiating and funny and outspoken. She had a way of just being so brutally candid. I’d just met her but it was like talking to a person you’d known for ten years.