‘Star Wars’ fans have started a petition for a new Princess Leia

The character was played by late actor Carrie Fisher

Star Wars fans have begun a petition to get Disney to hire an acting icon as a new Princess Leia.

The role was previously played by Carrie Fisher. The star died on December 27, 2016 after suffering a severe cardiac arrest onboard a flight from London to Los Angeles. She was 60 years old.

Fans are calling on Disney, LucasFilm, LucasFilm president Kathleen Kennedy, and director JJ Abrams to replace Fisher with Meryl Streep in Episode IX. The petition describes Streep as “an ideal candidate”, saying she “has always been known as the greatest actress alive.”

“With three Oscar wins and twenty nominations (probably twenty-one by next year’s), her achievement in acting has long been recognised,” it read. “Apart from her acclaimed acting performances, her close relationship with Carrie Fisher and her performance in Postcards From The Edge also made her an ideal candidate to play Leia in Star Wars Episode IX.”

It noted that Postcards From The Edge was written by Fisher and was based on “her semi-autobiographical novel”. Streep played the character of Suzanne Vale in the movie, which the petition said is “believed to be based on Carrie Fisher herself”.

The petition currently has 8,443 supporters at the time of writing, while its goal is to get 9,000. There has been no response at present from any of the parties addressed in the campaign.

Leia was supposed to be at the centre of the plot for Episode IX, but her death meant the script had to be rewritten. Star Wars producers have said they will not digitally recreate Fisher for future movies, like they did in spin-off Rogue One: A Star Wars Story.